485. All I have seen teaches me to trust the Creator for all I have not seen. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

A morning glory at my window
satisfies me more than
the metaphysics of books.
~Walt Whitman

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Exquisite! Beautiful! Lovely! Elegant! Magnificent! What’s not to love about something as deserving of these adjectives as this morning glory? From its twisted bud to its fully opened flower, this  morning glory is an absolute marvel! As much to be adored as the flower itself are the heart-shaped leaves and the way the vines wrap around and cling to anything they touch. Simply put, this particular vine and each stage of its flowering process make manifest some of the most wondrous spectacles in my garden. That’s why I squeal with delight when the first one opens each year and mourn the loss of the last ones when the first freeze snuffs out their glorious reign. Each bell-shaped flower lasts for a single day, but the glory of that flower is so splendid that many times it is more than enough to be the drop that fills my cup to overflowing. Also, over the years it and other things of short-lived splendor have helped me realize that length of life is far less important than the magnitude and impact of goodness in whatever time a living thing is granted. Blue morning glories like the one above look like flowering bits of heaven spilling out of a small chalice, and because that diminutive goblet seems to hold a smidgen of holy light, I’ve often wondered if it is not a sample or preview of what Glory is like.

The fact that the Divine Trinity is three persons in One reveals that God is a relational Being. Not only does He want to establish an intimate relationship with His children but He also wants us to know Him intimately as well. How better to achieve that goal than to share with us what He treasures so that we’ll be inspired to seek the Holy One who is magnanimously loving and generous. By covering the earth with precious bits and pieces of Himself, God paints a “selfie” that leaves an unmistakable trail which, if followed, inevitably leads to His throne.

You alone are the LORD. You made the heavens, even the highest heavens, and all their starry host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them. You give life to everything, and the multitudes of heaven worship you. ~Nehemiah 9:6    ✝

345. Pull up a chair. Take a taste. Come join us. Life is so endlessly delicious. ~Ruth Reichl

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Today and every day may you see the “endlessly delicious” beauty in earth, sky, and sea. May you hear it in the song of the birds, in the wildness of the wind, in the splendor of starry nights. May you smell it in the fruiting and flowering of the earth. May you touch it in earth’s textures and in your human interactions. May you taste it in the food that comes from the fertility of the earth and from Creation’s life giving waters. May all these senses keep your child-like wonder and sense of awe alive and well. And may they teach you something about God’s ways and inspire reverence and gratitude for His gifts and blessings.

One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek Him in His temple. ~Psalm 27:4 ✝

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!

341. So pure, so still the starry heaven, so hushed the brooding air, I could hear the sweep of an angel’s wings… ~Edna Dean Proctor

Our Lord has written
the promise of resurrection,
not in books alone,
but in every leaf in springtime.
~Martin Luther

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Creation is a perpetual outpouring of God’s creative and loving selfhood. The sacred isn’t merely above us but forever within the entire body of Creation. The holy sound of God resonates in everything. The earth gives us reason to feel His gracious hand upon us while the forces of heaven sustain us. These realities are meant to stir in humanity a sense of belonging and in turn spark a desire to seek the Lord, but should they not, finding God in Christ is something even the blind can do. Our Creator sent us His son over 2,000 years ago, and He came to be our memory and to remind us of who we are and to whom we belong. Jesus is a revelation of our loving Father and His Kingdom’s intention. Christ offers salvation to the children of the Light who are subjected to temptation by malevolent forces, and He is a leader who directs God’s children into righteous rhythms of life, into a willingness to serve others, and into the dance of life–a dance in which the whole universe partners.

I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know Him better.  ~Ephesians 1:17  ✝

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!

304. The sun has come out…and the air is vivid with the coming spring’s light. ~Adapted excerpt from Byron Caldwell Smith

Let me arise and open the gate,
to breathe the wild warm air…
To let Life in, and to let out Death.
~Violet Fane

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Blow, Breath of heaven, blow!  Blow through the land and over the waters.  Carry away death’s dark vapors and let life in.  Let every mountain, plain, and valley break forth in gladness.  Let the “wild warm air” of coming spring spark life in every nook and cranny.  Let the ceaseless waves of the seas and the rushing currents of rivers roar with renewed passion for life.  Let the clouds suckle earth’s waters and send rain from heaven to moisten the earth and let loose her flowering.  Let life, whole and vibrant, dazzle us anew.  Blow, sweet Breath of heaven, blow!  Blow through Your children and take us down to the bottom of our souls where You, O God, the Breath of all things, are present “deep within all that has life.”  We who have traversed icy winter’s dark domain yearn to feel your warmth and vitality course in us and all of life again.  We long for earth and sky’s vast array of bright colors to take away winter’s preponderance of grays and browns.  O Holy One, come; let us see You “in every emanation of Creation’s life.”  We give you glory and thanks for all that You are, for Your ever-lasting goodness and never-ending love, “for creatures stirring forth,” “for plant forms stretching and unfolding,” “for the stable earth and its solid rocks.”  O blessed Breath of heaven, arise and blow life afresh through Eden’s gates!  (Quoted phrases from SOUNDS OF THE ETERNAL by J. Philip Newell)

By the word of the LORD were the heavens made, their starry host by the breath of His mouth.  ~Psalm 33:6   ✝

**photos via Pinterest

252. Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better. ~Albert Einstein

The cycle of nature—the progress from seed to fruition to dying-off and then renewal in the spring—was mirrored in the wild fields and the cultivated garden alike, while the fragility of harvest—the possible interruption of the cycle by drought, wind, or other natural calamities— established the pattern of how humans understood the workings of the cosmos.  The oldest of surviving sacred stories have their roots in the garden and reflect how humanity sought to understand the changeable patterns of their world…  ~Peg Streep

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There is nothing better for mortals than to eat and drink, and find enjoyment in their toil.  This also, I saw, is from the hand of God; for apart from him who can eat or who can have enjoyment. For to the one who pleases him God gives wisdom and knowledge…  ~Ecclesiastes 2:24-26a  ✝

**In the photo is a pink poppy in bloom next to one that has already lost the petals which surrounded its seed pod.