1185. We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures. ~Thornton Wilder

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Today is not just another day, it is the one day that is given to you today. It is a gift, the only gift of a day that you have right now. And so the only appropriate response is gratefulness. If you do nothing else but to cultivate that response, to the great gift that this unique day is, and if you learn to respond as if it were the first day of your life and the very last day, then you will have spent this day very well.

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Begin by opening your eyes and be surprised that you have eyes you can open, the incredible array of colors that is constantly offered to us for pure enjoyment. Look at the sky; we so rarely look at the sky, so rarely note how different it is from moment to moment with clouds coming and going. We just think of the weather, but we don’t think of all the different nuances of weather. We just think of good weather and bad weather. This day, right now, this unique weather, maybe a kind that may never come in that form again. The formation of clouds in the sky may never be the same than it is right now, open your eyes and look at that.

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Look at the faces of people that you meet. Each one has an incredible story behind their face, a story that you could never fully fathom not only their own story but the story of their ancestors. We all go back so far. And in this present moment, this day, all the people you meet, all that life from generations and so many all over the world, flows together and meets you here like life giving water if you only open your heart and drink. Open your heart to the incredible gifts that civilization gives to you. You flip a switch and there is electric light. You turn a faucet and there is warm water and cold water and drinkable water. It is a gift that millions and millions of people will never experience. ~Br. David Steindl-Rast, Benedictine Monk

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Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; His love endures forever. 1 Chronicles 16:34  ✝

**Images via Pinterest except for middle one that I took at the bottom; collages by Natalie

1018. Expectancy is the atmosphere for miracles. ~Edwin Louis Cole

Even if I know I shall never change the masses,
never transform anything permanent,
all I ask is that the good things also have
their place, their refuge.
~Richard Wagner

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Scripture tells us that we are made in the image of God, and I expect that has nothing to do the with our faces and everything to do with our hearts. Therefore through us He can bring to fruition all that is within His limitless power to do. How?

Our hearts are able to feel another’s anguish, Our eyes can see the lacking needs of others, Our mouths can deliver His smile to light up darkness, Our voices can declare quiet, comforting words for ears to hear, Our hands can administer compassionate healing, And our legs can carry us wherever we need to go to accomplish such things.

How then can one who breathes the very breath of a Holy God, who bears His very image do anything less than deliver anything He asks of us. That is the purpose that should drive our lives. It has never been all about self, for truly what is love, and all humans yearn for and must have love, without a place to spend it, and where better to start spending than with someone in need. Honor the gifts you have been given, rejoice in them, and use them.

So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them male and female he created them. ~Genesis 1:27  ✝

**Image via Pinterest

734. Sometimes we should express our gratitude for the small, simple things like the scent of rain, the taste of our favorite foods, the sound of a loved one’s voice. ~Joseph B. Wirthlin

Sense the blessings of the earth
in the perfect arc of a ripe tangerine,
the taste of warm, fresh bread,
the circling flight of birds,
the lavender color of the sky
shining in a late afternoon puddle…
~Jack Kornfield

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The day has come.
It is already full of beauty
and blessings, good and holy.
Take time to notice them–
Behold the flowers, even
the small and unassuming ones.
Hear the hum of the bees
as they taste the nectar’s sweetness.
Look around for smiling faces,
and listen to the sounds of joy
in childen laughing at play.
Smell the fertile earth and the rain,
and feel the wind upon your face.
Then rejoice in the myriad pleasures
sensory perceptions offer you.
~Natalie Scarberry

You will eat the fruit of your labor; blessings and prosperity will be yours. ~Psalm 128:2   ✝

605. It’s interesting when you read the life of Christ how much time He spent healing the sick. ~Francis Collins

The miracles of the church seem to me
not to rest so much upon faces or voices or
healing power coming suddenly near to us from afar,
but upon our perceptions being made finer, so that
for a moment our eyes can see and our ears can hear
what is there and has been about us always.
~Adapted excerpt by Willa Cather

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I (Jesus) will restore you to health and heal your wounds. I am with you, within you, all around you–continually at work in your life. When your awareness of Me grows dim, My Presence continues to shine brightly upon you. This Light has immense healing Power. So dare to ask great things of Me, remembering who I am. I am able to do exceedingly abundantly above all you ask or think. Pondering My limitless ability to help you will strengthen your faith and encourage you to pray boldly.

Praying in My Name–with perseverance–can accomplish great things. Learn from the parable of the persistent widow, who refused to give up. She kept bringing her petition to a judge who neither feared God nor cared about men. Eventually her persistence wore him down, and he gave her what she sought. How much more will I respond to My children who cry out to Me day and night! Though you may have to wait a long time, do not give up. For everyone who asks and keeps on asking receives; he who seeks and keeps on seeking finds. ~From JESUS TODAY by Sarah Young (**In all of Sarah’s devotionals she writes as if it were Jesus, Himself, who is speaking to us.)

I dedicate this post to all who read it and are in need of healing! I pray that Christ, The Bread of Life, restore health and wholeness unto you! In Jesus’ name! Amen!

536. There is music in the meadows…There is rhythm in the woods, and in the fields…
 ~William Stanley Braithwaite

How silently they tumble down
And come to rest upon the ground
To lay a carpet, rich and rare,
Beneath the trees without a care,
Content to sleep, their work well done,
Colors gleaming in the sun.
~Elsie N. Brady

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I imagine the eyes of Jesus
Were harvest brown,
The light of their gazing suffused
With the seasons:

The shadow of winter,
The mind of spring,
The blues of summer,
And amber of harvest.

A gaze that is perfect sister
To the kindness that dwells
In his beautiful hands.

The eyes of Jesus gaze on us,
Stirring in the heart’s clay
The confidence of seasons
That never lose their way to harvest.

This gaze knows the signature
Of our heartbeat, the first glimmer
From the dawn that dreamed our minds,

The crevices where thoughts grow
Long before the longing in the bone
Sends them towards the mind’s eye,

The artistry of the emptiness
That knows to slow the hunger
Of outside things until they weave
Into the twilight side of the heart,

A gaze full of all that is still future
Looking out for us to glimpse
The jeweled light in winter stone,

Quickening the eyes that look at us
To see through to where words
Are blind to say what we would love,

Forever falling softly on our faces,
His gaze plies the soul with light,
Laying down a luminous layer,

Beneath our brief and brittle days
Until the appointed dawn comes
Assured and harvest deft

To unravel the last black knot
And we are back home in the house
That we have never left.
~John O’Donohue

Jesus called the crowd to Him and said, “Listen and understand.” ~Matthew 15:10   ✝

* Edited image via Pinterest

504. O suns and skies and clouds of June, and flowers of June together, ye cannot rival for one hour October’s bright blue weather. ~Helen Hunt Jackson

 

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Delightful candy apples,
A red carmel coating,
Sticky with each bite you take.
making faces red.
~Sylvia

Sylvia’s poem above is Dodoitsu which is a form of Japanese poetry developed towards the end of the Edo Period. Dodoitsu poems consist of four lines with the syllabic structure 7-7-7-5, no rhyme or metre is used, and any subject is acceptable.

Keep me as the apple of Your eye; hide me in the shadow of Your wings. ~Psalm 17:8   ✝

**Candy Apple Image found on Pinterest

502. The morrow was a bright September morn; the earth was beautiful as if newborn; 
there was nameless splendor everywhere, that wild exhilaration in the air… ~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Did you hear them? Of maybe see them?! Did you? I didn’t either, but I know autumn fairies played upon the lawn last night; dew from their pixie dust was shining like diamonds upon the grass this morning. They must have worn themselves out in their playfulness, however, and vanished with the dawn because now where once they romped all I see are avian wings crisscrossing the yard.

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Fall has come but her red leaf and her gold have not. And so though the year is growing long in the tooth, the sparkle of life’s spark continues to pulse audibly to the beat of Yahweh’s heart. His Eden is still very much alive; spring and summer’s glory have not been vanquished. I know because I can hear it and see it bursting forth in the red of rosy faces, the yellow that sits atop the Maximillian sunflowers, the white that calls out from the Angel’s trumpets, the pink that plays on in phloxy mounds, the blue that paints the sky and the morning glories, the orange that echoes from the echinacea, the purple that mounts the ruella, and the green that continues to flesh out in grass and fern.

Splendor and majesty are before Him; strength and joy are in His dwelling place. ~1 Chronicles 16:27   ✝

Thank you, Lord, for the beauty of this amazing day as well as the power and strength that fills this aging, ailing body with enough oomph to praise you and rejoice in another day!

** Image via Pinterest