Potentially violent thunderstorms began to move in over us from the western and southwestern counties this afternoon. As they did, the normally busy birds disappeared first, and then the dogs began to bark up and down the alleyway. Before the rain started to fall, the sky darkened considerably, and we could hear thunder rumbling in the distance. At that point the innocents in the garden seemed stiffly poised as if to brace themselves against the nasty, threatening storms that carried with them the threat of hail and/or tornadoes. Neither they nor I had long to wait however because soon the heavens opened up, and rain began to pour down harder than it has in years. With the rain legions of lightning bolts filled the skies; at one point TV reports said our area had had 2000 lightning strikes during a 15 minute period. Talk about the potential for violent storms! Now other than hearing water continue to drip from the gutters and thunder growl occasionally in the distance, the storms seem to have passed unless of course they build again as the evening progresses, and that they well could do. For such is life on the Texas prairies in May, but in the midst of a decade long drought me and the peach trees can’t help but sing praises to the Lord for today’s blessing of abundant rain. At the same time I’ve lived here long enough to be prudently praying that we continue to be sheltered from the nastiness that a tempest like this could yet spawn.
I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm. ~Psalm 55:8 ✝
Thank you, Lord Jesus, that you save, you heal, you restore, and you reveal Your Father’s heart to us! You have captured me with grace and I’m caught in Your infinite embrace!
She (nature) withers the plant down to the root
that she may grow it up again fairer and stronger.
She calls her family together
within her inmost home to prepare them for being
scattered abroad upon the face of the earth.
Early morning light steals across straw-colored grass and slowly warms the biting chill of a February dawn. Splinters of sunlight glisten and sparkle as they move over the garden’s frost-laden, bare bones. From my vantage point inside I can make out a lone, reddish leaf, not quite ready to be a memory, clinging tenaciously to a branch in the ornamental cherry tree. It reminds me that a wellspring of life lies dormant below in nature’s “inmost home” where “her life is gathered into her heart.” My attention is diverted next to the dogs I hear barking up and down the alleyway. The feral cats must be on the move in search of food. Then birds begin to show up at the feeders and high above their flutterings I see the first squirrels running the high wires. Soon birdsong breaks morn’s silence, and lights start coming on in the once darkened houses around us. The neighborhood is coming alive and gearing up for the day, but no, not I. Since retirement I’ve been able to linger as long as I like most mornings and from my well-situated chair watch the days and the changing seasons pass over my yard. Nature’s recurrent patterns and rhythms have always comforted me, and it’s delightful to be able to partake of her daily feasts. Though evidence of God’s grace is readily apparent in the spectacular moments of life, perhaps sweeter are the ones ferreted out of day to day, ordinary living. These are blessings that are not unlike the contrast of a mass of diamonds scattered out on a dark piece of velvet in which all are lovely but none seems particularly more special than the other and that of a singular diamond’s loveliness on the same piece of fabric which in its aloneness is brilliantly stunning.
For the word of the Lord is right and true; He is faithful in all He does. ~Psalm 33:4 ✝