1351. Stella, oh, Stella, Stella! Stella for Star! ~Excerpted line from A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE

Beauty is a nectar which
intoxicates the soul.
~T.C. Henley

Screen Shot 2017-02-01 at 9.24.38 PM.png

In north central Texas where I live, more often than not, we have a winter warm up for a week or so in January. It’s just enough for a few things to believe that spring has arrived and subsequently bloom weeks earlier than normal. As a result of this year’s January warm up, my first magnolia stellata, sometimes called the star magnolia, opened this morning believing that springtime had indeed arrived. Her white, tinged with pink, beauty intoxicated, as it always does, not only my soul but also my eyes. Thus  I found myself uttering the usual litany of words about her stellar loveliness, words like exquisite, gorgeous, magnificent, elegant and so on. However, I given that I’m certain the magnolia has been egregiously duped by January’s treacherous travesty,  I also offered up a prayer that none of her succeeding blooms should perish before the return to winter that February will bring.

Screen Shot 2017-02-01 at 9.26.15 PM.png

Ecclesiastes 3:4 tell us there’s “a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance…,” and what amazes me is that even the creatures and beauties of the field seem to know this. The more I observe the goings on in my garden and other aspects of Creation, the more awestruck I become with its plans, its workings, and its Maker. God’s promises are rock solid and too is His faithfulness in keeping them. For no matter what may strike at the foundations of Creation, nothing stops it cycles and continuation. Another thing that simply blows my mind is that God specifically chose all of you and I to partner with Him in Creation’s amazing and ongoing drama. Perhaps that’s something we should contemplate and let sink down deep in our spirits every day and then thereafter take great delight in the peace that comes with such an awareness.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens… ~Ecclesiastes 3:1  ✝

517. Autumn: “The season for enjoying the fullness of life…” ~Denis Waitley

Autumn, the year’s last,
loveliest smile.
~William Cullen Bryant

Screen shot 2014-10-14 at 3.08.48 PM

And what an absolutely lovely smile it is! Earth is the only planet in the universe that’s just the right distance from the sun to support life as we know it, and by its 23 and a half degree tilt, the seasons are created, seasons that change as the result of wind, rain, fire, and ice. I think autumn smiles because it knows that its predecessors will come again and again to bring days of glory born in their reign back to fall’s domain. At the end of a great, BBC-made Disney movie called EARTH, the narrator, speaking with an appropriate sense of wonder and awe, makes the following statement, “Earth is full of harsh realities, but sometimes it’s just paradise.” And so it is! When our planet is seen in that light, one can’t help but realize the captivating majesty and goodness that Adam saw and that can still be seen today. When seasons are observed closely on a day to day basis or the opening verses of Ecclesiastes’ third chapter are read, mortals understand that everything, even harsh realities, has a season and purpose in God’s Creation. So it is that now the corners of fall’s mouth are already turning up and soon the season will spread into a grand and broad smiling face that brings an end only to the span of a single year.

  There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:
a time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,
a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace.
~Ecclesiastes 3:1-8   ✝

**Image via Pinterest