Beauty and the Beast


The wonders of Creation never cease to amaze and fascinate me. This morning Mother Nature revealed a Beauty and the Beast display outside our Great Smoky Mountains abode here down in the ‘holler’ by the ‘crick’.

Rhododendron blooms’ perfumed beauty are definitely more appealing than frightening, ugly dobsonflies, but each has their place and purpose in Mother Nature’s journal where all are beautiful.

You are the God of great wonders! – Psalm 77:14

Keep Looking Up . . . His Best is Yet to Come!

Rhododendron

Dobsonfly
Home in the ‘Holler’

Spider Stats


Garden Spider

With over a million different kinds, insects represent the most numerous of all life forms on earth. I grateful the Creator gave them exoskeletons to lug around and considerably limit their size. Had they endoskeletons like us, we’d be impossibly outnumbered, tripping over ants, swatting mosquitoes with baseball bats, and Orkin exterminators would be packing, wearing Kevlar vests.

I’m appreciate all insect predators . . . colorful birds, furry anteaters, slimy frogs, even spooky bats to assist keeping the ever-burgeoning insect population in check . . . but wonder why God saw fit add scary spiders to help keep insects from ‘bugging’ us 😊

This morning, a Garden Spider gained a modicum of my respect. The intricate, geometrically designed web this little 8-legged architect had constructed altered my perspective of these creepy creatures. Patiently waiting to ambush and chow down on some savory insect, I realized this tiny guy (girl?) is actually my ally, possibly sparing me a future mosquito bite 😍

Sooooo . . . with that renewed mindset, here’s a ½ dozen Spider Stats to lend a favorable ‘spin’ for any arachnophobes out there, with one caveat . . . spiders still can bite Ya’ 😫

  1. Webs of Steel – for size, the silk strands of a spider’s web are far stronger than steel!
  2. Custom Designing – Most spiders have 3 spinnerets that extrude silk which dries when exposed to the air as they build their webs. Some have up to 8 spinnerets for different thread sizes. The spider controls the thread’s thickness, texture, and adhesiveness as it’s drawn from the spinnerets depending on the thread’s intended purpose.
  3. Web Recycling – each night the spider eats most of its web, leaving the primary frame to re-weave a new circular web each morning. It’s believed spiders eat their webs to recycle nutrients and consume small food particles . . . Yummy! 🤪
  4. Here’s Looking at You – most spiders have eight eyes. However, some species have six, four, two, or even no eyes. Even within a single species, the number of eyes may vary, but it’s always an even number.
  5. Cautious Courtship – at breeding time the male carefully ventures into the female’s nest, and then plucks the strands of her web to entice her. Before mating, he drops a safety web so that he can escape should he ‘strike a wrong note’, and she decides to cannibalize him 😲
  6. Venomous, but not Dangerous – like most spiders, Garden Spiders have venom to incapacitate their prey. However, their venom is not harmful humans.

All things bright and beautiful, all creatures great and small, all things wise and wonderful, the Lord God made them all.”

Cecil Frances Alexander

Day’s End


Peace cloaked my soul witnessing creation whisper “Good Night” in celestial hues.

Be still and know that I am God.” –  Psalm 46:10

Great Smoky Mountain Sunset

Keep Looking Up . . . His Best is Yet to Come!

Roses and Raindrops


Fragrance of roses drifted on the fresh air cleansed by the passing storm. The sweet scent and lingering raindrops clinging to vivid pink petals created one of those ethereal ‘eternal instant’ moments sensing the unspeakable wonder of God’s creation, bathed in comfort of His unconditional love.

I came across this poem ascribed to a 13th century poet that hints at the precious ‘eternal instant’ that was mine to embrace this morning . . . I M Blessed . . . May U B 2

It is only a tiny rosebud

A flower of God’s design

But I cannot unfold the petals

With these clumsy hands of mine

The secret of unfolding flowers

Is not known to such as I

God opens this flower so sweetly

When in my hands they fade and die

If I cannot unfold a rosebud

This flower of God’s design

Then how can I think I have wisdom

To unfold this life of mine?

So, I’ll trust in Him for His leading

Each moment of every day

I will look to Him for His guidance

Each step of the pilgrim way

The pathway that lies before me

Only my Heavenly Father knows

I’ll trust Him to unfold the moments

Just as He unfolds the rose

Keep Looking Up . . . His Best is Yet to Come!

Red Dawn


Great Smoky Mountains Sunrise

The 1984 movie Red Dawn portrays a group of teenagers banding together to defend their town and country from an invasion feared as the dawn of World War III. Entertaining, far-fetched cinema back then, still serves as an ominous warning in today’s contentious world.

Today’s sunrise was a Red Dawn of a more peaceful genre, a glowing splendor awareness of my insignificant, infinitesimal smallness, and His magnificent, unfathomable love. Were that our world would acknowledge our controversial smallness and pursue His healing greatness.

One generation commends your works to another; they tell of Your mighty acts. They speak of the glorious splendor of Your majesty”.

Psalm 145:4-5

Keep Looking Up . . . His Best is Yet to Come!

Contemplating Life


This Great Smoky Mountains ephemeral, after-the-storm panorama marked the close of another day. The scene evoked a juxtaposed, sobering/joyful contemplation of life’s unknown brevity, and breathtaking beauty. As dusk fell, the confident wisdom of a beloved preacher comforted my thoughts:

What is your life? You are but a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.”

James 4:14

This is the day the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.”

Psalm 118:24

I’ve read the last chapter of Revelation, and we win .”

Billy Graham

Keep Looking Up . . . His Best is Yet to Come!

Cooling Off


Muggy 90s have descended upon our Great Smoky Mountains abode, and we awoke to Mr. Smoky splashing in the creek outside our bedroom window to cool off. Thought about inviting him in for some honey drizzled pancakes, but Ellie was still in her PJs and decided she rather not ‘bear ‘ it.

😊

PS  – Please disregard the time and date shown on this video clip. I’ve yet to get around to resetting them since purchasing the game camera back in 2017 . . . obviously not a high priority on my Bucket List.

Be Blessed and . . .

Keep Looking Up . . . His best is yet to come!

Fur and Fowl


Lotsa’ activity early this morning in our Great Smoky Mountains backyard. Here’s a few vid clips of our backyard buddies 😊

Mama Bear & Junior
Papa Bear
Great Blue Heron

Keep Looking Up . . . His best is Yet to Come!

Great Smoky Mountains Sunrise


Three rugged timbers on a hillside at sunrise, reminiscent of a Sonrise 2,000 years ago that forever vanquished death and sealed my salvation.

“Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death. is your sting?”

I Corinthians 15:55

Keep Looking Up . . . His best is yet to come!