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Monday, April 24, 2017

Inspired by . . . Life thru My Lens 17:52

My Dreamer and I were out of town last week, so I'm a bit off my regular post schedule.

Our trip didn't go at all as planned. In fact, we ended up doing something entirely different, in a completely different place.

Eastern Phoebe
But that's okay. Sometimes we need to be reminded that our future is not in our hands.
Come now, you who say, "Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit"—yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, "If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that."  (Jas 4:13-15)
That can either be an incredibly scary truth or an incredibly peaceful one.

It really depends upon your view of God.

When I consider the current state of our world, knowing that God is in control brings peace to an otherwise chaotic view. Dialing that down to our own "little worlds," I've found the result to be the same. We may want to be in control, but striving for that reality only ever left me in a continual state of worry and strife. [click to tweet]

I still make plans, but I try to do so with an open hand and open heart.

I should take a lesson from the sweet little finches that visit my yard.


Lesser-goldfinch Texas morph
Because of the destructive raccoons in my area, I wasn't able to leave my bird feeders out while I was away. Silly me, I was actually worried about the birds not having food while I was gone.


Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? (Mat 6:26)
Yes, I am more valuable than they. And God will care for me, just as He cares for the birds of the air.

In other bird news, I spotted my first ruby-throat of the season!

Ruby-throated Hummingbird
They are on their way north to a feeder near some of you! In a rare show of solidarity, I captured a few of the females eating together.



One of my favorite milkweed varieties, antelope horn, is in bloom.



This milkweed attracts a lot of different pollinators. These little butterflies are hairstreaks, the "Olive" Juniper Hairstreak, I believe. The antelope horn is a primary food source for monarch butterflies, so I'm glad to see it in abundance this year.

Nestwatch:

Mamma wren is busy feeding her babies.




I count a total of three beaks so far! They're growing fast. Be sure to come back next week for another update.



Have you made any plans lately that didn't quite work out?

What are you seeing through your lens this week?

Have a wonder-filled week,

Note: Earlier this week, my friend, Lyli, shared ten powerful promises of God that will bring you peace. You can find them here: Lylidunbar.com




Sharing inspiration here:
Nature Notes, Through My LensBird D’pot,
Saturday’s Critters, Life thru the Lens,
Wild Bird WednesdayOur World Tuesday,
Community Global, Photo Friday, Little Things Thursday
Testimony Tuesday, #TellHisStory, Life-N-Reflection,
Faith On Fire, Grace & TruthInspire Me Monday,
RaRa Link Up, Intentional Tuesday,
#WordswithWinter, Titus 2 Tuesday, Thoughtful Thursdays,
Encourage Me Monday, Wholehearted Wednesday,
Women with Intention Wednesdays, Word Filled Wednesday,
#GiveMeGrace, Sitting Among Friends, #Glimpsesofhisbeauty
Counting My Blessings, Grace Moments, Heart Encouragement,
#DancewithJesus

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Inspired by . . . Life thru My Lens 16:52

After culling my photos from this last week I realized I had far too many that I wanted to share with you for one post. So you'll have to come back next week to see the rest!

These first pictures are awful as far as quality goes. I took them through our side windows after the sun had set. My poor camera had no light to work with. But it was so exciting to see this Common Gray Fox! I just had to share them with you!




Despite his name, these foxes are anything but common. This is only the 2nd time in the five years I've lived here that we've seen one.  I think you can tell how beautiful he is even though the pictures are so poor. He usually only comes after dark but I hope I can get better pictures to share with you in the future.

I added a new bird to my life list this week. This lovely Eurasian Collared Dove.



Sadly, the white-winged doves were not welcoming, so I haven't seen her since.

Does this look like a likely place for a nest?



I didn't think so either, but those crazy wrens . . .



You can barely see the little pink babies inside. I'll post updates as they grow!

I've mentioned before that we have a variety of flycatchers in the area. I've seen the Great Crested Flycatcher in years past, but this year it seems he has decided to stay. He may have a mate and a nest - I'm still watching and investigating!




We finally got all the plants in the garden! I stick mostly with Lantana, Sage, and milkweed varieties. Partly to discourage the deer but they are also wonderful plants for butterflies! 



And we've already had visitors!




I've seen two monarchs already! So far, only the pipevine swallowtail [battus philenor] has lingered long enough for me to capture. Always a favorite!

“A garden to walk in and immensity to dream in--what more could he ask? A few flowers at his feet and above him the stars.” ― Victor Hugo, Les Misérables

What are you seeing through your lens this week?

Blessings,


Sharing inspiration here:
Nature Notes, Through My LensBird D’pot,
Saturday’s Critters, Life thru the Lens,
Wild Bird WednesdayOur World Tuesday,
Community Global, Photo Friday, Little Things Thursday;
Life-N-Reflection

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Inspired by . . .  foolishness


Much of what I write about here may seem like foolishness to you.
There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death. (Pro 14:12)
This man, Jesus, and what He did may seem foolish to you.

For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written, "I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and the discernment of the discerning I will thwart." (1Co 1:18-19)
I understand. Without the Holy Spirit to enlighten you, these things will make little sense.

The things of God must be spiritually discerned. However, God is easily found by anyone who seeks Him.
And He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined allotted periods and the boundaries of their dwelling place, that they should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward Him and find Him. Yet He is actually not far from each one of us, for "'In Him we live and move and have our being'; as even some of your own poets have said, "'For we are indeed His offspring.' (Act 17:26-28)
You have a choice when it comes to Jesus. To accept or deny Him. This choice can be put off, but it cannot be escaped. In the end, a choice you will make.

Your disbelief does not offend me. It grieves me. I pray that your heart will soften. That you will seek the Truth.
So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, "If you abide in My word, you are truly My disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free." (Joh 8:31-32)
So what is the truth?

all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, (Rom 3:23)

Our sin separates us from a Holy and Just God.

For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Rom 6:23)

But GOD . . .

but God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Rom 5:8)

For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit, (1Pe 3:18)

The debt of sin must be paid.  Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins. (Heb 9:22)

For our sake He made Him to be sin Who knew no sin, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God. (2Co 5:21)

There is no magic formula to faith in Christ. You don't have to say special words or be forgiven by a priest. Jesus is our High Priest. Go to Him. Confess to Him your sin. Repent (turn away from your sin) and believe in Him.

because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. (Rom 10:9-10)

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us. (1Jn 1:9-10)

Remember,

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. (Eph 2:8-9)

If you have taken theses steps of belief today, I greatly rejoice with you! You are a new creation!
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. (2Co 5:17)

And just as a butterfly emerging from its chrysalis needs time to strengthen his wings before he can fly, you will need a time of strengthening, too. I urge you to connect with other believers in a Bible-teaching church. Let someone (I'd be honored if it were me) know about the decision you've made. I've listed some ministries at the end of this post that can give you guidance.

But most important of all - read His word! Get to know Your Savior! 

For He Is Risen!
Celebrate this truth today!

Amen.
Blessings on your Easter,


Resources:
Online Bible Reading: https://www.youversion.com/
Truth for Life Ministry of Alister Begg: https://www.truthforlife.org/
How to Know Jesus: https://peacewithgod.net/
Online Bible Resource: https://www.biblegateway.com/




Sharing inspiration here:
Nature Notes, Through My LensBird D’pot,
Saturday’s Critters, Life thru the Lens,
Wild Bird WednesdayOur World Tuesday,
Community Global, Photo Friday, Little Things Thursday