1355. I just kept thinking, if I don’t do something, who will? ~Matthew West

I am only one, but I am one.
I cannot do everything,
but I can do something.
And I will not let what I cannot 
do
interfere with what I can do.
~Edward Everett Hale

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I woke up this morning
Saw a world full of trouble now
Thought, how’d we ever get so far down
How’s it ever gonna turn around
So I turned my eyes to Heaven
I thought, “God, why don’t You do something?”
Well, I just couldn’t bear the thought of
People living in poverty
Children sold into slavery
The thought disgusted me
So, I shook my fist at Heaven
Said, “God, why don’t You do something?”
He said, “I did, I created you”
~Excerpted lines from a song
by Matthew West

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While in the car today, I heard this song again and thought to myself how relevant it was and still is in these troubling times. Going to church to worship and praise God once or twice a week is not nearly enough to fulfill our purpose and obligation to the loving God we worship. We have been given that we might give, and we are called on to be His church whenever and wherever we are. In so doing we become the light and hope of a fallen and hurting world. Anybody with an eye to see and an ear to hear knows that all around each and every one of us are people who are suffering, people who are poor, people who are hungry, people who are thirsty, people who are abused, people who are broken. people who need love and encouragement and on and on the list goes. And for all of them far more has to be done than the preaching of a sermon. That’s why we, each one of us, have to let our actions be a message and/or an act of merciful grace to and for others. We must let God use the gifts and talents He gave us to bless those in need. That is the true way of a miracle worker. One random act of kindness a day can change 365 lives every year. And when the right words can’t be found, just a smile and a kind word will sometimes do for they too can be the stuff of miracles. And if you are in need or feeling down, go be a blessing to someone else and you’ll find that the blessing, like a boom-a-rang, comes right back to you. Smiles and kindness costs the giver nothing but their impact is beyond measure, and like a pebble thrown in a pond they reach out in ever-widening circles!

You(God) enlarge my steps under me, and my feet have not slipped. ~Psalm 18:36 ✝

**All images via Pinterest; collage by Natalie

1337. Of winter’s lifeless world each tree now seems a perfect part; yet each one holds spring’s secret deep down within its heart. ~Edited quote by Charles G. Stater

Now winter nights enlarge
The number of their hours;
And clouds their storms discharge
Upon the airy towers…
~Thomas Campion

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Gray, foggy dreariness
ushered in the day;
A mist, a cold, frigid drizzle,
fell from on high;
Bare, starkly austere, lay everything
I could see; and
Silence, a stilled quietude, blanketed
my wintry garden.
Bleakly naked, towered tall trees that
stood above all else,
But underneath them from the secret place
murmured a voice,
The sacred, almost indistinguishable, faint
whisper emerged amid
The fog and fine rain to go forward undetected
past the woody sentinels
To allow its utterances to break into morn’s reverie
to tell of signs, longed for signs
Of tiny sparks of life that are preparing to push up
despite the gloominess
And ‘twas this message that stirred embers in my spirit
to keep their glimmer from
Becoming far too dim to continue sustaining my hope,
expectations, and “joie de vie.”

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Don’t think the garden loses its ecstasy in winter.
It’s quiet, but the roots are down there riotous.
~Rumi

The tempest comes out from its chamber, the cold from the driving winds. ~Job 37:9 ✝

**Both photos taken by Natalie

1326. You were born a child of light’s wonderful secret—you return to the beauty you have always been. ~Aberjhani

Light gives of itself freely,
filling all available space.
It does not seek anything in return;
it asks not whether you are friend or foe.
It gives of itself and is not thereby diminished.
~Michael Strassfeld

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Each day brings new opportunities,
allowing one to constantly live with
hope and the possibility of love—
be there for others—bring
love and light into their lives.
~Edited and adapted quote
by Roy T. Bennett

And with any amount of light, even the tiniest glow or spark, comes hope. Light, love, and hope! Where would any of us be without a measure of these three things? They are inextricably linked together and have been since the beginning of time! For light begets hope, hope inspires love, and love brings light. But…

Love does not find you,
nor do you find love.
Love is ever present…
When you are willing to open, to risk,
to adventure, to live with authenticity –
then the power of Love flows
through you and creates light.
~Edited and adapted passage
by Julie Parker

Light in a messenger’s eyes brings joy to the heart, and good news gives health to the bones. ~Proverbs 15:30  ✝

**Image found on Wallpapers App

1312. Trees are the earth’s endless effort to speak to the listening heaven. ~Rabindranath Tagore

And this, our life, exempt from public haunt,
finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks,
sermons in stones, and good in everything.
~William Shakespeare

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When I am among the trees,
especially the willows and the honey locust,
equally the beech, the oaks and the pines,
they give off such hints of gladness.
I would almost say that they save me, and daily.

I am so distant from the hope of myself,
in which I have goodness, and discernment,
and never hurry through the world
but walk slowly, and bow often.

Around me the trees stir in their leaves
and call out, “Stay awhile.”
The light flows from their branches.

And they call again, “It’s simple,” they say,
“and you too have come
into the world to do this, to go easy, to be filled
with light, and to shine.”
~Mary Oliver

The Lord God made all kinds of trees grow out of the ground—trees that were pleasing to the eye and good for food. ~Excerpt from Genesis 2:9  ✝

1263. Then summer fades and passes and October comes. ~Excerpt from lines by Thomas Wolfe

Autumn begins with a subtle change
in the light, with skies a deeper blue, and
nights that 
become suddenly clear and chilled.
~Glenn Wolff and Jerry Dennis

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At long last August passed into nothingness for the year, and I welcomed September, hopeful, despite knowing better from past experience, that it would indeed be sweet and bring on autumn’s amazingly lovely, cool, crisp days. Though disappointed by it’s initial lack of sweetness, I clung to the hope that the equinox would remedy what September had  so far failed to do, a hope fried by the 102 degrees last Monday, the 101 degrees last Tuesday, and the high 90’s the remainder of the week. But maybe, just maybe, as September passes into October this week, summer may actually begin somewhat of a fall into autumn’s golden glory, that is if the weather guys are right about their predictions. But then I know only too well that they might not be because I’ve spent too many years here enduring the heat as far as into December at times. So shhhhhh, let’s not allow my words and doubt frighten the chance away should it ring true. In the meantime, as usual I’ll cling to the memory of autumn that remains always in my heart.

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In every month, yet in aught begun,
Read over that month, what avails to be done;
So neither this travail shall seem to be lost,
Nor thou to repent of this trifling cost.

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…we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. ~Excerpt from Romans 5:3-5 ✝

**Images via Pinterest and Yahoo weather; collages created by Natalie

1258. Patience is the ability to idle your motor when you feel like stripping your gears. ~Barbara Johnson

When expectations delay for too long,
doubt draws nearer in haste and
and patience grows far more tiresome .
~Edited quote by
Ernest Agyemang Yeboah

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Where, oh where, is autumn,
Beautiful, comely, colorful autumn
With its crisp, dewy mornings,
Its big, bright, orange pumpkins,
And leaves of prettily tinted hues
That blow around willy-nilly on
The urpsurges of its blustery days?
And when, oh when, will we see
That huge,  yellow harvest moon?
What could be the cause of such delays?
Could autumn be lost somewhere
Along the way, or could it just be
That ancient earth is slowing down?
Or, is it because the “heat beast”
Is disinclined to let loose its hold?
I’ve observed the sun and moon
And the stars changing places above
So I know autumn must be on its way.
But could someone please tell me
When this steamy heat will leave!
~Natalie Scarberry

How my impatience grows when I’m this heat-weary and uncomfortable! But since there are no real guarantees for more of life or anything else than what I already have, it is really foolish to be impatient. Happily-ever-after is elusive in all things, and a certain measure of joy can be found in and on all the roads we travel through this thing called life. And interestingly it is in our discomfort zones that we often increase our spiritual awarenesses. Genuine peace comes from accepting what is and in looking for the promised gifts within each of our days whether they are spent in comfort or just the opposite. And so I’m reminded as I write this that Scripture tells us this is the day the Lord has made and so rejoice in it not whine in it.

But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience. ~Romans 8:25  ✝

**Photo by Mandy Disher

1254. The Holy Spirit in every single soul “prays in us with unspeakable groanings.” ~Excerpted from a quote by Edith Stein

Holy Spirit, you are welcome here! Come flood this place and fill the atmosphere!
May you have a truly blessed Sabbath and feel the touch of Christ’s presence!

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Holy Spirit, You are welcome here
Come flood this place and fill the atmosphere
Your glory, God, is what our hearts long for
To be overcome by Your presence, Lord
There’s nothing worth more
That could ever come close
No thing can compare
You’re our living hope
Your presence, Lord
I’ve tasted and seen
Of the sweetest of loves
Where my heart becomes free
And my shame is undone
Your presence, Lord
CHORUS
Let us become more aware of Your presence
Let us experience the glory of Your goodness
~Excerpted lyrics written by
Cyril Garrett Neville, Gaynielle H. Neville,
Hack Bartholomew, Norman Caesar

But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. ~John 14:26  ✝

**Image via Pinterest