Monday, July 25, 2016

Wonderfully Made

Butterflies can't see their wings. 
They can't see how beautiful they are, 
but everyone else can. 
People are like that.

You [my God] created my inmost being; 
you knit me together in my mother's womb. 
I praise you because 
I am fearfully and wonderfully made; 
your works are wonderful, 
I know that full well.
~ David, Psalm 139:13-14, NIV

Thursday, July 14, 2016

The Road Ahead

Rapid City, South Dakota

As we journey through life, we may feel confident the road ahead seems straight and reasonably easy to travel, as in the photo above. We have a good idea where we're headed and have plans for getting there. But even the best-made plans can and often do go awry, don't they? One moment all is well. In the next, we're dealing with an unexpected "upset" that has left us shocked and shaken and unsure of what to do next.

Sometimes we have a warning, as in the photo below, that there will be hard-to-handle twists and turns on the road ahead. We brace ourselves; we travel more thoughtfully and slowly on the road of life, paying close attention not only to ourselves but also to fellow travelers on life's journey. We try to avoid "colliding" with them or making any errors in judgment that will end in sorrow and/or suffering.

Whether our path seems straight or full of twists and turns, may we agree with David who said, in essence, "No matter where the road of life takes me, I will not fear because You, My God, are with me. Even if my journey takes me through a deep, dark valley or if I have to travel roads that make me feel scared and uncertain, You are always with me, always guiding me, always providing everything I need to make it through life." (See Psalm 23, below.)

South Dakota
The LORD is my shepherd;
   I have everything I need. 
He lets me rest in green meadows;
   he leads me beside peaceful streams.
   He renews my strength.
He guides me along right paths,
   bringing honor to his name.

Even when I walk
   through the dark valley of death,
I will not be afraid,
   for you are close beside me.
Your rod and your staff
   protect and comfort me.
You prepare a feast for me
   in the presence of my enemies.
You welcome me as a guest,
   anointing my head with oil. 
   My cup overflows with blessings.
Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me
   all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord
~David, Psalm 23:16, New Living Translation

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Carry On!

After I’d e-mailed some friends a link to the site where I’d posted the photos I’d taken recently at Callaway Gardens, one who had also photographed there that day, replied, saying, “Very nice pictures. I was disappointed that some of my butterflies had ragged wings. I see that happened to you, too.”

Although I’m awed by perfection, I was not disappointed at the sight of the ragged wings. Rather, I was inspired by the butterflies that were living life as fully as possible despite whatever trauma(s) they had endured; and I saw such incredible beauty in the parts that remained. Thus, I am delighted to display the photos I took of such courageous winged creatures and will continue to be grateful for the reminder to “carry on,” no matter what.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Happy Independence Day!

Devil's Tower in Wyoming
Quote by Oliver Wendell Holmes, 1809-1894, American physician, poet, professor, lecturer, author