553. As autumn passes one remembers one’s reverence. ~Yoko Ono Lennon

Jack Frost
~By C.E. Pike

Look out! Look out!
Jack Frost is about!
He’s after our fingers and toes;
And all through the night,
The gay little sprite
Is working where nobody knows.

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He’ll climb each tree,
So nimble is he,
His silvery powder he’ll shake.
To windows he’ll creep
And while we’re asleep
Such wonderful pictures he’ll make.

Across the grass
He’ll merrily pass,
And change all its greenness to white.
Then home he will go
And laugh ho, ho ho!
What fun I have had in the night.

Frost performed “its secret ministry” as sleep held us close in the night, and when I awoke it lay twinkling like stardust atop things in the garden and on the lawn. Then as dawn’s early light kissed our few colorful autumn leaves, it turned them into glowing golden nuggets or the color of crystalized, reddish ripe persimmons or the usual, splendid oranges of advancing autumn. And as some of the leaves tumbled to the ground, winds blew them into little swirling eddies that played like happy children upon the lawn and in the street. O Autumn, your magic does indeed bring a sense of spectacular glory even as Spring and Summer’s progeny perish.

There is a playful side of nature, and there is a playful side in us which tells me that the Lord too knows something of playfulness since we are made in His image. Anyone who has seen or heard how breezes play in rustling leaves, how raindrops splatter and play on rooftops, how squirrels chase each other round and round a tree trunk has witnessed God’s sense of playfulness.

“Does the rain have a father? Who fathers the drops of dew? From whose womb comes the ice? Who gives birth to the frost from the heavens when the waters become hard as stone, when the surface of the deep is frozen?” ~Job 38:28-30   ✝

** Image via Pinterest

509. How we treat the vulnerable is how we define ourselves as a species. ~Russell Brand

What is it to grow old?
Is it to lose the glory of the form,
The lustre of the eye?
Is it for beauty to forego her wreath?
Yes, but not for this alone.

Is it to feel our strength –
Not our bloom only, but our strength -decay?
Is it to feel each limb
Grow stiffer, every function less exact,
Each nerve more weakly strung?

Yes, this, and more!

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It is to spend long days
And not once feel that we were ever young.
It is to add, immured
In the hot prison of the present, month
To month with weary pain.

It is to suffer this,
And feel but half, and feebly, what we feel:
Deep in our hidden heart
Festers the dull remembrance of a change,
But no emotion -none.

It is -last stage of all –
When we are frozen up within, and quite
The phantom of ourselves…
~Excerpted lines from a poem by Matthew Arnold

Echoes, echoes of the past–voices, so many familiar voices gone, now silenced by the closing of their life’s doors–memories, memories mingling with the present, all bringing the dark clouds that move in across her brain where the fury of raging storms begin on unfamiliar shores. The echoes, the voices, and the memories become scrambled in her dementia so that things and people once cherished create anxiety, anguish, and at times torment. Her mind, once sharp and clear, is now befuddled as she becomes more and more lost inside herself and her fears. Her family raised, her labors done, there is nothing left now but the lonely silence of her worsening deafness and the rapid waning of her vision. Soon she will be ever so far away from me, the one in whose womb my life began. Will she then still know my face and the feel of my touch? Will the skies ever again clear in her head and cast her weary, but back on familiar shores? Or has she begun the final journey of her dreaded aloneness? Please Lord, be with my mother as she struggles to navigate these dark passages of uncharted waters. Bring her comfort and peace, and if not mine, then let her recognize Your touch and know Your face. Let the child she has again become blindly trust as she once did that all is well with her soul and that You will care for her always. And let Your sweet benedictions steal into her senescent heart and fragile mind that’s becoming so profoundly confused, wounded, and betrayed by her aged, earthly body.

One of my followers commented yesterday on my memory post about the sadness of dealing with an aging parent who has Alzheimer’s, and I know that others of you are caring for elderly parents whose memories are failing. In those situations there are two or more people affected by the circumstances; both the aged and their caregiver(s) are profoundly impacted by this passage. So I decided to share the above with all of you.  It is something I wrote in my journal during a long, hard night when I was caring for my 92-year-old mother before she passed away.


Even to your old age and gray hairs I am He, I am He who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you. ~Isaiah 46:4   ✝

**Image via Pinterest

Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you. ~Isaiah 46:4 ✝

305. Awake, thou wintry earth – Fling off thy sadness! ~Thomas Blackburn

It was one of those March days
when the sun shines hot
and the wind blows cold:
when it is summer in the light,
and winter in the shade.
~Charles Dickens


The vernal equinox, official start of spring, is still 7 days away, but there are signs of its coming.  And with each new green shoot Creation’s heart beats stronger, God’s ancient utterances grow louder, and the potential for lifting humankind’s spirits increases.  As the sanctuary of earth and sky throws open its doors, doors once “frozen” in wintry bondage, the introit to the full ceremonial form of springtime’s metaphorical “high mass” is beginning.  Presiding over the opening ceremonies are their highnesses, the avian cardinals.  With the arrival of the equinox on the 20th, other “clergy” donning different vestments will appear, and they too will perform their holy sacraments upon earth’s hallowed altars.  Currently only chants can be heard echoing close to the ground or reverberating near branch and cane.  However the rest of spring’s holy voices will soon join in, and their loud arias will climb garden walls and charge over hedgerows.  As ever increasing waves of spring’s sweet sounds cross the land, they will be discernible to some extent even in the mighty cement jungles of commerce.  Despite clouds of spiritual pollution, the light that was in the beginning will break forth anew, and sounds of the eternal will be able to be heard above the cacophonous noises of humanity’s hectic busyness.  Earth’s quiet, eternal rhythms still proffer wholeness, harmony, and healing in the maelstrom of madness within today’s “cultural currents.”

God’s voice thunders in marvelous ways; He does great things beyond our understanding.  ~Job 37:5   ✝

**Image via Pinterest

296. March is a month of considerable frustration – it is so near spring and yet…the weather still so violent and changeable… ~Thalassa Cruso


Let there never be forgot,
that once there was a spot,
for one brief, shining moment
that was known as Camelot.
~Lerner and Lowe, 1960


The line above from the Broadway musical makes a statement that in fact there was a Camelot, and many people, including President John F. Kennedy, seemed to believe that it was a real time and place in history.  Real or not so real, it was the legendary, marvelously magical time and place of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table. For me it’s magical moments in time when things ever so extraordinary and good are happening in the awakening landscape.  Then sadly when they get nipped in the bud by a bitter, cold snap, it’s a betrayal of sorts not unlike what brought an end to the glory of Camelot.  Such is what happened night before last to the pretty babies in the photographs.  But I shall not curse late February for telling the traitorous lies that led to their demise; instead I rejoice that they came at all.  Even if only for a few days their “brief, shining moment” in the garden’s “kingdom of Camelot” was stunningly beautiful.


By the breath of God ice is given, and the broad waters are frozen fast.  ~Job 37:10  ✝

209. Bad weather always looks worse through a window. ~Author Unknown

Spooky wild and gusty;
swirling dervishes of rattling leaves race by,
fleeing the wildflung deadwood
that cracks and thumps behind.
~Dave Beard



White, the world is still white, very white and very frozen!  And the only movements I see out my window this morning are leaves fluttering to the ground and birds coming to the feeders for breakfast and the bird baths for water.  Sadly all the birdbaths are so frozen that no matter how hard they peck at the ice, there’s no water beneath it to be had.  So after putting in enough chair time to be fully awake, I braved the cold and took them a bowl of water.  As I inched along on the frozen ground, I noticed that some of the fallen leaves from the red oak were striking lovely poses wherever they’d fallen.  One of them had even lodged itself quite prettily inside a large ceramic pot I’d emptied of its greenhouse-bound contents.  Once back inside after my errand of mercy and a few snaps of the camera, I heard on the news that there was a 30% chance of more sleet today and that the temperature would remain well under the freezing mark.  It really didn’t feel all that bad while I was out, but it seems we are in for another forced stay-at-home day.  I won’t complain though for like the birds I have much for which to be thankful.  The birds too have warmth and safety?  Indeed they do, for the ones who are cavity nesters, I’ve put in place plenty of birdhouses around the yard and for the others several kinds of evergreens have been planted.  If God stewards and provides for me, and he does so well, how can I not in turn steward and provide for all that He has given me?

For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!  ~Romans 5:17  ✝