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Ragweed, Thistles, and Onions

Most people might feel a little depressed on a gray, rainy day. But me? Give me brilliant blue skies, emerald grasses, snowy clouds, and I throw myself a pity party.


Tuesday was a “10” on-a-scale-of-10 kind of day, but I grumbled.

I complained.

I envied those who could walk outside on such a day without fear of bee and wasp stings and allergic reactions. I decided to get my dissatisfied self out of the house and try to enjoy the scenery through the windshield of my car. I drove a couple miles north of our farm, then west, and continued to meander around our part of the county. I wasn’t done with my discontented murmuring yet, though.

Why don’t people take care of their weeds? All that ragweed pollen will make me miserable. And thistles! Did you ever see so many thistles? And they’re going to seed!



As I continued the circuit of fields and farmsteads around our house, I started snapping photos. The scenes were aesthetically pleasing, I grudgingly admitted.

My self-pity began to erode as I stood in the middle of the gravel road with camera in hand, and I heard the beginning of a song on the radio: He Reigns by the Newsboys.

It’s all God’s children singing
Glory, glory, hallelujah
He reigns, He reigns

Ah, yes, Lord. Forgive me for being ungrateful.

Melt my stony heart.

Forgive me for being like the children of Israel who, after being delivered from Pharaoh, complained about what they missed, instead of being grateful for what they had.

The rabble with them began to crave other food, and again the Israelites started wailing and said, “If only we had meat to eat!  We remember the fish we ate in Egypt at no cost—also the cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions and garlic.  Numbers 11:4,5   NIV

As I drove and when I stopped to take photographs, I sang “Glory, glory, hallelujah. He reigns!” The act of singing transformed my mood from grumbling to thankfulness. I remembered that God was present in my praise.

But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.   Psalm 22:3   KJV

I saw the echoes of His glory in the beauty of creation: color, form, plants, and animals.

White puffs of cumulus floated across an azure sky, dragging shadows behind like a wedding dress train–Glory, Glory!

A pair of turkey vultures drifted over the timber, buoyant on warm updrafts–Hallelujah!

Venerable monarchs searched for sweetness in pink clover blossoms–He reigns!

Journey with me. This is what I saw, and this is what I heard, and below are the words I sang.

Press play to listen, and then watch the slide show.

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“He Reigns” by the Newsboys:

It’s the song of the redeemed
Rising from the African plain
It’s the song of the forgiven
Drowning out the Amazon rain
The song of Asian believers
Filled with God’s holy fire
It’s every tribe, every tongue, every nation
A love song born of a grateful choir

It’s all God’s children singing
Glory, glory, hallelujah
He reigns, He reigns
It’s all God’s children singing
Glory, glory, hallelujah
He reigns, He reigns

And all the powers of darkness
Tremble at what they’ve just heard
‘Cause all the powers of darkness
Can’t drown out a single word

When all God’s children sing out
Glory, glory, hallelujah
He reigns, He reigns
All God’s people singing
Glory, glory, hallelujah
He reigns, He reigns

The children of Israel complained because they craved onions (among other foods), but the Lord was still protecting them and providing for their needs.

My prayer for us all: that we choose to dwell on what God has done for us, is doing for us, and will do for us instead of the “onions” we’re missing.

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