..."and a highway shall be there, and it shall be called the way of holiness; evil minded people shall not travel on it, but it shall be for those wayfarers who are traveling toward God. (Isaiah 35:8, adapted)

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Jonathan Edwards: the appearance of divine glory in almost everything...

The appearance of everything was altered; there seemed to be, as it were, a calm, sweet, cast, or appearance of divine glory, in almost everything.

God’s excellency, his wisdom, his purity and love, seemed to appear in every thing;
in the sun, moon, and stars; in the clouds and blue sky; in the grass, flowers, trees; in the water, and all nature; which used greatly to fix my mind.

I often used to sit and view the moon for a long time; and in the day, spent much time in viewing the clouds and sky, to behold the sweet glory of God in these things:

In the meantime, singing forth, with a low voice, my contemplations of the Creator and Redeemer. . .” - 

--Jonathan Edwards

photo taken in Wilmington, Delaware

Friday, January 27, 2012

Before You Were Born I Loved You!

more cardinal pictures:
this reminds me of the old "balance the bone on the dog's nose" trick....but he's
already enjoying his favorite black sunflower seed. Its amazing how sharp their
beaks are!
On the Love of Christ for us:

Before you were conceived I wanted you

Before you were born I loved you

Before you were here an hour I would die for you

This is the miracle of life.

- Maureen Hawkins

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Snow Falling on Cardinal

We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence. See how nature - trees, flowers, grass- grows in silence; see the stars, the moon and the sun, how they move in silence... We need silence to be able to touch souls.”

--Mother Teresa
snow falling on cardinal at my window....

Sunday, January 22, 2012

"Thou Shepherd of Israel and Mine" by Charles Wesley

 Thou Shepherd of Israel, and mine,
The joy and desire of my heart,
For closer communion I pine,
I long to reside where thou art:
The pasture I languish to find
Where all, who their Shepherd obey,
Are fed, on thy bosom reclined,
And screened from the heat of the day.

 Ah! show me that happiest place,
The place of thy people's abode,
Where saints in an ecstasy gaze,
And hang on a crucified God;
Thy love for a sinner declare,
Thy passion and death on the tree:
My spirit to Calvary bear,
To suffer and triumph with thee.

'Tis there, with the lambs of thy flock,
There only, I covet to rest,
To lie at the foot of the rock,
Or rise to be hid in thy breast;
'Tis there I would always abide,
And never a moment depart,
Concealed in the cleft of thy side,
Eternally held in thy heart.

--hymn "Thou Shepherd of Israel"

by Charles Wesley

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Yea, the Sparrow hath found her house....

It's snowing here and this little one came to breakfast on my windowsill.
I'm thinking that it gives me great joy to provide food on a wintry day
to my little bird friends, I'm sure God enjoys providing for us in the same way.

"Even the sparrow finds a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, at your altars, O LORD of hosts, my King and my God." Psalm 84:3

Friday, January 20, 2012

And the Cream of All My Heart I Will Bring Thee

King of Glorie, King of Peace,

I will love thee:

And that love may never cease,

I will move thee.

Thou hast granted my request,

Thou hast heard me:

Thou didst note my working breast,

Thou hast spar’d me.

Wherefore with my utmost art

I will sing thee,

And the cream of all my heart

I will bring thee.

Though my sinnes against me cried,

Thou didst cleare me;

And alone, when they replied,

Thou didst heare me.

Sev’n whole dayes, not one in seven,

I will praise thee.

In my heart, though not in heaven,

I can raise thee.

Thou grew’st soft and moist with tears,

Thou relentedst:

And when Justice call’d for fears,

Thou disentedst.

Small it is, in this poore sort

To enroll thee:

Ev’n eternitie is to short

To extoll thee.

The Temple: George Herbert 1633

photo taken in cathedral at Ludlow, England 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

"Try not to fear [bodily ills] and commit yourselves wholly to God, come what may. What does it matter if we die? How many times have our bodies not mocked us? Should we not occasionally mock them in our turn? And, believe me, slight as it may seem by comparison with other things, this resolution is much more important than we may think; for, if we continually make it, day by day, by the grace of the Lord, we shall gain dominion over the body. To conquer such an enemy is a great achievement in the battle of life. May the Lord grant, as He is able, that we may do this. I am quite sure that no one who does not enjoy such a victory, which I believe is a great one, will understand what advantage it brings, and no one will regret having gone through trials in order to attain this tranquillity and self-mastery.

--Theresa of Avila

photo taken near Rand, Colorado

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Enjoy Me!

Just these two words He spoke
changed my life.

"Enjoy Me."

What a burden I thought I was to carry--
a crucifix, as did He.

Love once said to me,
"I know a song,

would you like to hear it?"

And laughter came from every brick in the street
and from every pore
in the sky,

After a night of prayer, He
changed my life when

                        He sang,
"Enjoy Me."

--from Theresa of Avila, "Laughter came from every Brick"
--Love Poems from God  edited by Daniel Ladinsky

photo taken at Magic Wings Butterfly
So. Deerfield, MA

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Longing to See the Beauty of The Lord

Is longing for the Beauty the happiest place of all? Longing to gaze upon
the Beauty of the Lord and to seek Him, the place where all joy spills
from? Now matter how manifested, beauty is what sparks the romance
and we are the Bride pursued, the Lover pursuing, and known or
unbeknownst, He woos us in the romance of all time, beyond
time. I ache for the oneness.

--1000 Gifts,
Ann Voskamp

photo taken at Winterthur,
Wilmington, Delaware 

 But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise;
God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.

 He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things--
and the things that are not--to nullify the things that are,

 so that no one may boast before him.

It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has
become for us wisdom from God--that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.

Therefore, as it is written: "Let him who boasts boast in the Lord."

( 1 Corinthians 1: 28-31)
(preacher in the marketplace, Abergavenny, Wales)

Thursday, January 05, 2012

The Life of True Holiness ....

The life of true holiness is rooted in the soil of awed adoration.
It does not grow elsewhere.

--J.I. Packer

photo taken in Abergavenny, Wales
(roots growing on bark of a tree)