Three months ago the Trumpeter Swans hatched out five fluffy cygnets. The kids are now feathered out and beginning flight lessons in preparation for their first flight south with mom and pop. They should be taking off before election day . . . barring any ‘fowl-ups’ . + ^ Keep Looking Up
Shalom! . . . Hello, may you have peace, harmony, wholeness, completeness, prosperity, welfare, tranquility. Goodbye.
Moving into this home a decade ago, I fastened this all-encompassing, powerful Hebrew word of greeting, hope, encouragement, and parting on the well house from which our life sustaining water is drawn.
Over the past decade, tucked away in Alaska’s wilderness reaches, I’ve been undeservedly blessed to experience Shalom’s sustaining blessings. Were that Shalom defined today’s world of ever-increasing turmoil.
The tranquil calm reflected on Fish Lake reminded me . . . it’s not the word on the well house roof that has granted these blessings, it His undeserved, gracious “…peace that passes understanding…”.
One of the best things (for me, perhaps not you 😊) about sharing pics ramblings with y’all is your responses. Thank you.
An encouraging comment to yesterday’s ‘Mother Nature’s Tears‘ blessed me, and got me to more ‘leaf musing’.
Every leaf, like us, is a unique creation . . . no two ever being exactly the same . . . appearing in a myriad of shapes, sizes and colors from different places and ‘Family Trees’. Come Spring, each bursts from its bud in pristine newness of life. Soon, exposed to the world, it develops its own vein patterns, color tinges, blemishes and holes before, come Fall, returning to the earth it came from .
What’s unfathomably omniscient to me is that, like us, God created and knows each one. What’s unfathomably reassuring and humbling to me is that, in spite of my vein patterns, color tinges, blemishes and holes , He still loves me enough to someday follow my life’s Fall with a promised forever Spring. Sure grateful He chose not to ‘leaf me alone’ . . . couldn’t resist 😊.
Be Blessed, and ‘leaf’ no blessing unturned. + ^ Keep Looking Up
Uncertainty . . . frustration . . . irritation . . . some of 2020’s Covid-19 world’s detrimental strands . Weave in threads of economic, social, and political turmoil, and a cobweb of discouragement threatens to entangle life’s joy.
Albeit, in somewhat of a different venue, when faced with such humanly instigated maladies, the wisest of all men often “…went up on a mountainto pray …” and ‘clear the cobwebs’. Yesterday, cobwebs threatening to cocoon my joy, I took His advice.
Cloudy, cool, drizzly days are ideally tailored for spinning gloomy cobwebs, not hiking mountains. I chose the latter. Lashing my sleeping bag to my pack, I headed up Castle Mountain. In the midst of moose season, it was a tad surprising that no hopeful nimrods were encountered . . . the mountain was mine! . . ‘Alone’! (one of my favorite TV series 😊) . . . but I digress.
Gathering up some firewood, a cheery fire soon warmed my shelter, and spirits. Talking with Dad (one’s never truly ‘Alone’ no matter how high the mountain or deep down the sea), the melancholy cobweb strands began to unravel. I fell asleep to the rustle of leaves, dislodged by the wind, falling to earth.
Soooooo . . . what did Dad and I talk about? My usual . . . “I’m sorry”s; “Help me”s; “Please show me”s. His response? After nearly eight decades, I’ve yet to hear the distinct audible voice of God, even with my hearing aids in 😊. However, I often ‘hear’ His answers in a surreal calming assurance that says “All’s forgiven”; “I’m here”; and “Patience, you’ll see”. Those were His answers, high up on the mountain, I carried into my dreams last night .
This morning, He sealed last evening’s answers in dawn’s cloud-script . . . His silent calm assurance answers to my prayers, brushed across the sky in ‘Angel Wings’? Another ‘coincidence’? . . . perhaps, but I saw and ‘heard’ otherwise.
Mother Nature possesses the quintessential wardrobe. No two outfits are ever precisely the same, fashionably coordinated with each new season . . winter’s pristine white; spring’s verdant green; summer’s flamboyant florals; fall’s blazing hues . . . eye-candy for the soul!
Nestled in the Chickaloon wilds, undaunted by gathering storm clouds, here’s the display of the spectacularly stylish attire Mother Nature donned today.
Woke up to another overcast day this morning . . . Baa Humbug! . . . they aren’t my favorite . . . sunshine’s my meteorological elixir, and lately it’s been hiding out.
Sooooo . . . ole Freddy’s perpetually wandering mind starting wishing he was a commercial jet pilot; bathed in sunshine; zooming through the cloudless wild blue yonder at 400 mph; far above the gloomy clouds . . . now there’s a scary scenario for all passengers aboard 😊.
Anyhoo, realizing my mindset held the potential to deteriorate into little, self-inflicted pity party, I opened my Bible app. ‘Coincidentally’, this verse popped up:
“The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it.” – John 5:1 . . . Hmmmm . . .
Then, ‘Coincidence’ #2 appeared right outside the same window that had just framed those gloomy clouds . . . a brilliant burst of sunshine suddenly lit up a patch of wilderness. Quickly grabbing my camera, I ran out on the deck and snapped this picture before‘Coincidence’ #2 disappeared as quickly as it had appeared.
Sometimes, “…a still small voice…” silently shouts encouragement in a flash of sunlight, dispersing the gloom. Thanks Dad!
Spent the afternoon following swans around Fish Lake in a canoe .
Current politics may be ‘fowled up’, but not so with our local Trumpeter Swan family. Mr. & Mrs. Trumpeter have successfully raised their brood of five signets to teenagers. With morning temps now dipping below freezing, it’s time to begin flight training for the journey south before the runway freezes over.
A daybreak stroll along the Matanuska River treated me to one of Mother Nature’s fascinating wonders, salmon returning to their birthplace to spawn and die.
Got me to a thinkin’ . . . as an almost octogenarian returning to my birthplace and ‘spawning’ are the furthest things from my mind. However, I did ponder how much further upstream remains for me to travel before I turn belly up .
Smile lots, frown little, and keep swimming upstream . . . the best is yet to come! + ^ Keep Looking Up
“When life gives you lemons, make lemonade” . . . a familiar slogan of encouragement in the midst of adversity.
Originally coined in 1915 by Elbert Hubbard writing an obituary for his perpetually optimistic friend who refused to succumb to the ’lemons’ of his disabilities, it was later popularized by Dale Carnegie in his book How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, but not before it was skillfully ‘poeticized’ in The Rotarian under the title The Optimist:
“Life handed him a lemon, As Life sometimes will do. His friends looked on in pity, Assuming he was through. They came upon him later, Reclining in the shade In calm contentment, drinking A glass of lemonade.”
Standing by the river today this lone aspen tree garbed in fall’s gold got me to a-thinkin’ . . . despite solitary exposure to the elements on sparse, nutrient deprived soil, this little aspen thrives, exemplifying making ‘lemonade’ from life’s adversarial ‘lemons’. . . a humble reminder that whatever adversity life may bring my way, I need to persist and “Grow where your planted” to hopefully someday enjoy . . .
Reclining in the shade In calm contentment, drinking A glass of lemonade.”
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to His purpose.” – Rom:8:28
May this find your glass of lemonade half-full to overflowing. Be blessed, and . . . + ^ Keep Looking Up