I have always enjoyed the natural world. The diversity of animals, plants, and even things like bugs fascinates me (although I prefer bugs from a distance). The multitude of creatures, some downright funny in appearance and actions, are an endless source of delight and wonder.
And I have had plenty to wonder at here in Indonesia. There are so many new creatures to marvel over, some of which I have only read about before, but never seen.
There are the tropical fruits. Fruits with names like snake-fruit, and three different kinds of rambutan.
And then there are the plants. The lotus flower, an image frequently associated with the far east, is an incredible water-lily like plant with leaves that are at least 2 feet in diameter. It looks like you could walk across the water on these plants.
The Kapok tree, which can grow upwards of 65 feet tall.
Orchids and bamboo and all manner of tropical plants.
And then there are the creepy-crawly things, some of which I would like better outside of my apartment; beautiful butterflies, little geckos, and snails almost as big as my shoe!
What a wonderful, imaginative, astonishing God we serve! Praise the Lord, says the writer of Psalm 104 after contemplating the creation.
And this is exactly the response the natural world should evoke, says Paul. The wonder of creation should cause us to contemplate the creator. And while I regularly do this at home, Indonesia has offered me brand new opportunities to revel in God's wisdom. Praise the LORD indeed!