Monday, December 19, 2016

Christmas Reflection on Visible and Invisible

My friends, family and followers of The Turn-Up Patch....    Several years ago, I wrote this post and felt that this reflective message was worth repeating as we approach Christmas and the closure of 2016.  Christmas can be a time of celebration but for some, it can also be a time of sadness, depending on personal circumstances.  One profound event has and will remain a solid force despite circumstance and that is the movement of Light in the form of Jesus - the Visible and the Invisible....

The Visible - The Invisible - And Christmas
I begin this post with threads of thought that eventually leads to a pivotal event we celebrate known as Christmas.  The birth of Christ has impacted and influenced the world and its humanity that began nearly 2000 years ago.  I'd like to mesh Christmas and weave within, the dynamics we have of infrared and color, filter and illumination, the visible and the invisible.  As this occurs in our natural world, so it is spiritually.

There are complicated definitions of visible and invisible light.  Simply said, the visible light is an electromagnetic wave that the human eye can see.  It runs along a spectrum from short wavelengths of violet to longer wavelengths of red, which gives us color perceptible to our eyes.  There is another kind of light that we can't see.  This is infrared light and is a thousand times wider than that of visible light, but it is invisible to our eyes.

In photography, for an effect or artistic component, an infrared filter can be used either on the camera or in photo editing.  This filter blocks all visible light and can produce a dramatic look in transforming the subject matter in the exclusion of color to an infrared image.  The camera subject is illuminated  by infrared light and the every day scene becomes extraordinary in the absence of color.



Color -  visible light
Infrared - invisible light





















 

Illumination!   A source of light that can brighten and make clear.  All of us have had an 'aha' moment when one has a sudden insight in awareness or comprehension in understanding.  It can also be called an 'epiphany', which is any moment of great and unexpected insight or intuitiveness.  Belief is also a component of illumination -  it is the Holy Spirit filter to see into the invisible that thrusts us beyond the visible color of  human knowing.  For some, the aha or epiphany moment can lead to belief; for others, belief can be the catalyst to revelation that occurs along the way in the walk of faith.

We are just a few days short from an event that changed the course of humanity - the birth of illuminating Light that came in human form - Jesus, the Son of God, the Light of the world.    We honor the mystery, significance and magic that Christmas brings and are humbled by the fact that God, the Father of Lights, so loved the world...



You can also view at this link:   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zb1AsyltkpA


from The Turn-Up Patch to each and all ~

                                           Have a Blessed and Merry Christmas! 






 

 
Until we meet again in the New Year on Monday, January 2.....


Monday, December 5, 2016

What Really Matters

Hard to believe that we are in the final month of 2016.  As many people have wondered.... where did the year go??   The endeavor to 'catch-up' is lost in the 'way-behind' category.  To live in the moment is blurred by the constant having to do.  Many of us are consoled by the fact that we are still able to do but appreciation is lost in the piling up of busyness in preparation for whatever lies ahead demanding attention.  The below quote is quite significant when a person stops to consider what is important in a moment of time....

We just finished celebrating Thanksgiving last month.... a time to remember and to thank our God for the many blessings we enjoy in these United States.  A time to reflect on what really matters.  It was Abraham Lincoln who set in motion an annual National Day of Thanksgiving in 1863 and proclaimed it to be....  'a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens.'  Our 16th President goes on to say that it is... "announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history, that those nations are blessed whose God is the Lord... But we have forgotten God.  We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us, and we have vainly imagined, by the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of own...  It has seemed to me fit and proper that God should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged, as with one heart and one voice, by the whole American people..."

Words that were spoken by President Lincoln cited spiritual ailments in his day that ring true today in the 21st century. Oh, that the human condition would evolve as quickly as the advancement of knowledge.... perhaps, time would then have a wonderful way of showing what really matters.


 Join me at The Turn-Up Patch on Monday, December 19th.... 



 

Monday, November 21, 2016

The Applause of God in Sunrise & Supermoon

I live in a land that has awesome sunrises and sunsets!  And I have used my blog to display some in photography.  Last week was exceptional in the privilege of watching a "super sunrise".  It seemed extraordinarily beautiful in color.   Earth's scenery was bathed in its light and I felt immersed, becoming one with the hues of God's palette of color. I felt applause well up within me as I took these pictures in delight of such a marvelous Creator. As my camera lens captured this inspiring sight, my heart and mind began to wonder.... does God applaud?    We are made in the image of God (Genesis 1:27).  When we are pleased or delighted, it can move us to applaud in a heart-felt appreciation.   I began to think about the 'what if'.... what if applause was two-fold and God actually was applauding too.   

The dictionary definition of applaud means to express approval through clapping the hands in appreciation and pleasure.  Applause also means to commend highly, to praise, to acclaim, to encourage and cheer.


His expression in living art of a sky painted with early morning light was awesome.  In His magnificent love for us, He wants to encourage and to cheer us on in the applaud or acclamation of a new day.  What better way to use a glorious sunrise, in a divine declaration to His own, that we are not alone and a reminder that He will never leave us nor forsake us....

Resident geese doing a fly-by
It is fair to say that applause can be a celebration between the Creator and His created in a shared moment of delight.  Here is a quote by Ezra Taft Benson..."To the proud, the applause of the world rings in their ears; to the humble, the applause of heaven warms their hearts."

In closing, I'd like to share one more photo in God's diverse universe.  I did manage to get a shot of the supermoon.   However, it was waning, since this was taken on November 16.  Unfortunately, we had cloud cover and rainy skies for several days, including the actual supermoon date of November 14.  Sigh!  It is not the best photo but it was still great to take a picture and watch the play of moonlight and clouds.  I stood gazing heaven-ward in remembrance that such a bright supermoon caused by closeness of earth's proximity, will not occur again until November 25, 2034 - 18 years from now.  It was on January 16, 1948, when the moon was this bright because of the same closeness to earth - 70 years ago.  So many changes in such short spans of time from the past and now into the future.  It causes one to ponder what will enfold in the time to come.

Look for and enjoy the beauty around you in applause and appreciation........    See you again at The Turn-Up Patch on Monday, December 5th.




Monday, November 7, 2016

Peace and St Francis de Sales

I begin today's post with a quote from St Francis de Sales...  "Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit.  Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset."   These are words of wisdom from a man who lived 400 years ago and these same words ring true today.  St. Francis died in 1622, at 55 years of age.  There is much to be said about this revered saint but I wanted to focus on this one quote out of many that was penned by him.
  Each generation has its own "upsets".  The difference in our world today, is that it is instantly known because of the advancement in technology.  We become aware of the news across the globe through a variety of media outlets, which include smart phones, internet and television to name a few.  Of course, in the years that St Francis lived on earth, those words were not around, let alone any understanding of what they could possibly mean in futuristic development.

What can be projected from the past to the present, using this quote as an example, is a common human malady in losing inner peace in upsetting circumstances.   There are all manner of upsets and they do not regulate themselves to time - they have been evident throughout the ages.   St Francis offered a solution as to not be in a hurry, do everything quietly and in a calm spirit.   That can be tricky when you are living in a raging upset.  Inner peace - a desired commodity!  It is a keeping power that relieves the pressing of anxiety and neutralizes the upset.  

I enjoy God's diverse universe - from the wonders of the sky to the amazing colors and forms of nature before our eyes.  It is calming to quietly absorb beauty, in sight or sound, and to take moments  to merely feel peace and allow it to grow.  I share a few photos that I took recently from resident geese that fly in and out of neighboring pastures - to glorious sun rays emitting from a cloudy sky - to sagebrush, barbed wire and an old post which stands before distant hills.


Use some moments out of your busy life and watch this beautiful time-lapse video called "Be Still and Know that I Am God (Nature and Earth's Beauty)" and enjoy peace....https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Bx7exmRqtY

Come back to The Turn-Up Patch for another visit on Monday,  November 21.  Until then, here is another quote for you out of Philippines 4:7.... "And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." 


Monday, October 24, 2016

Harvest Time and Community of Dayville, Oregon

Today, as we journey through Harvest Time, we take a little trip to Dayville.  I wrote about Dayville in October 2013 when the community was celebrating their Centennial including a fun video I put together of the creative scarecrows that lined their main street.  You can check out this post at the below link, which gives some background history about Dayville. 
http://turn-uppatch.blogspot.com/2013/10/centennial-scarecrows-dayville-oregon.html
Three years later, the friendly town of Dayville carries on their harvest time tradition, complete with this welcoming sign featured in the park. 

In all kinds of weather, through storms and sunshine, the sturdy scarecrows remain vigilant during October welcoming travelers driving through on Highway 26.  The residents who join in the creative fest for best harvest scarecrow, outshine in individual handiwork and it is difficult to make a choice as to a favorite ragamuffin.  Here are just a few samples...


 

Not to be outdone by scarecrows, pumpkins come into display with their whimsical faces drawn by a talented Dayville resident.  Featured at the Community Fall Festival, they were a hit as well as the food fare, prepared and served with plenty of delicious cuisine choice.


























Many thanks to the Dayville residents who make Harvest time in the John Day Valley unique with creative scarecrows and to Ruthie Moore for her 'funtastic' pumpkin faces - all done for our viewing pleasure!

Join me next time at The Turn-Up Patch (not Pumpkin Patch!!) on Monday, November 7.  Until then, sending to you a harvest of God's good blessings.....
 

Monday, October 10, 2016

Harvest Time and Community of Sisters, Oregon

Harvest time!  October is typically a month to enjoy the last hurrah of fall and begin the preparation for winter for those who live in seasonal conditions.  Mowing the lawn for the last time, digging up what is left of the vegetable garden and putting gardening tools away are only a few of the indications of weather change ahead.  Bringing in fire wood for those who have a wood stove, covering air conditioners and the usual house readying for cold weather.

October is typically celebrated as harvest time with special outdoor events staged before the onslaught of winter.  One such community is a lovely city called Sisters that is located in Central Oregon and is the gateway to the Cascade Mountains.  Tourists enjoy the many stores exhibiting local and specialized talent, art gallerias ranging from paintings to pottery to photography. 

An event that has been held annually for the past 30 years is the Sisters Harvest Faire.  Held in   downtown Sisters, there are streets blocked off for quality vendors featuring their handcrafted items. People come to enjoy quality handmade items as well as take advantage of the food court and live entertainment.  My friend and I journeyed over to Sisters for the day to take in the colorful display of creations in an energetic atmosphere.  There is much to be said about Sisters, but that will have to wait until a future post.  For a condensed version, Sisters is a western themed community, both charming and unique and lies at the scenic base of the Three Sisters Mountains.

With all the creativity that abounds during Harvest Faire.... God is not be outdone!  Our Master Creator painted His own beauty in our drive over to Sisters and on our return to the John Day Valley.  Since we left in the early morning hour heading West, this was the view of the eastern sunrise that was behind us.  Of course, I had my friend pull her car over, so I could take some shots, several of which I share with you....
Sunrise in Eastern Oregon
Driving home, there was a glorious sunset that was in strong competition for the sunrise scene.  Finding a safe place to pull off the narrow highway, I was able to capture these photographs of the western sunset.  Since the sky in color and cloud formation changes very quickly, a photographer should not wait long to take pictures, keeping in mind safety on the road.  Only a fellow photographer knows this frustration.  Some shots have been lost because of not finding a place to stop.  I can happily state that was not the case as evidenced by these pictures.... what a great way to begin and end a beautiful day!

Sunset in Eastern Oregon

Join me in two weeks on Monday, October 24th at The Turn-Up Patch with a continuing post on Harvest Time, featuring the Dayville scarecrows.


 

Monday, September 26, 2016

A Tempered Force

Two weeks have rolled by quickly for a new post at The Turn-Up Patch.  As I searched my heart for a message, what has jumped at me are two dynamics that has been in the news in recent weeks.  Of course, both involve perspective as to what personal viewpoint an individual shares.  But no matter what perspective, what seems to be lost in the translation is respect.  I have written previously about respect and also about the American flag, links to follow below.

My birthplace was Canada where I spent the first 21 years of my life.  Upon marriage and moving to the United States, I carried with me an innate respect for the law of the land whether it be Canada or the U.S.A.  There were morals and principles to be followed and a sense of honor in the privilege to live in freedom in either country.  The flag is an embodiment in representing national identity, whether it be the maple leaf or the stars and stripes. 


I became an American citizen and embraced the country of the United States of America and its' flag many years ago.  Throughout these years, I have noticed an erosion taking place - I am alarmed at the disrespect that is becoming prevalent across the land. Granted, that as a person matures, so does a country in evolving through struggles from technology to sociological advancements in the 21st century.  What should not change is respect, which is the tempered force  that restrains chaos in the conduit of changeDissent that shows disagreement in the radical objection of violence leads to dessent, a downward spiral that is devoid of respect and ugly in its promotion of lawlessness.   With this being said, please check this link on a post I wrote regarding the significance of respect....   http://turn-uppatch.blogspot.com/2016/07/respect-in-america.html 

The hopes and dreams, justices and injustices are written into the fabric of our country represented by "Old Glory".  It is a standard that is always measured by time in the movement of history.  Let it fly under the banner of respect for effective transformation.  A post that I wrote entitled "Identity of the American Flag" is a reminder of our country's foundation in the making for freedom's cause....
http://turn-uppatch.blogspot.com/2013/07/identity-of-american-flag.html

In closing, here is a sober reminder out of Mark 3:25, which states:   "A house divided against itself cannot stand".  This was the same quote that Abraham Lincoln used in a speech from 1858.  A truth for that time and a continued truth for this present age.

Join me at The Turn-Up Patch for another visit on Monday, October 10 .... 

 

Monday, September 12, 2016

A Visit to Magone Lake

Magone Lake is about a thirty minute drive from where we live in Eastern Oregon.  It is a hidden jewel within the Malheur National Forest in the Blue Mountain range.  Both residents and tourists come to enjoy its peaceful beauty and enjoy a retreat from the hectic demands of life.   Here, you can take a pause to do nothing except savor the warming sun on your body, the smell of clean air and sounds of nature.  The lake and the sky appear to be of one pristine blue broken by jagged forest trees of spruce and pine surrounding the perimeter of the lake.


There is a trail that surrounds the lake for those who would take a leisure walk, stopping to pick huckleberries along the path and always a scenic opportunity for those who carry a camera.  The lake provides fishing, canoeing and swimming for recreational pleasure.  Some folks come for an afternoon picnic and others stay in over-nite campsites.   


Locals from John Day, Mt. Vernon and Prairie City don't have far to travel for a mini vacation to a "get away" place for relaxing, whether for a few hours or a few days.  I have enjoyed visiting this Grant County scenic gem with my daughters and grandson, a backdrop in creating happy memories.  For more information on Magone Lake, check out this link:   http://www.recreation.gov/camping/magone-lake/r/campgroundDetails.do?contractCode=NRSO&parkId=75128 


As we bid farewell to summer, there is an appreciation that all the season brought.  Fruit and garden produce, flowers of all varieties in bloom, green grass and trees in full foliage are just a few of the tangible experiences of summer. Despite the hot days, we had long hours of sunlight that will soon be reduced as winter approaches. Predictably, the seasons pass by as a revolving door into a new year.  

Magone Lake is a little patch of beauty in Eastern Oregon and inspires us to consider our magnificent God, the Creator who Is All  and In All  in this world and the universe.  Please take time to check out a wonderful video entitled "God's Beautiful Creation, Awesome Scenery"    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F79Ck8rFIes

Come back and visit The Turn-Up Patch for my next post on Monday, September 26....

Monday, August 29, 2016

The Stress Factor

An apple tree was planted in the back yard of where we live a number of years ago.  It grew from a seedling to a mature tree bearing branches of apples, to the enjoyment of humans and horses. Just as we love the taste of apple pie, the horses salivate and slobber munching on apples freshly picked from the tree.  As the tree became a fixture in the yard, it also became witness to the growth of family in their changing seasons as well.  Daughters that surrounded the tree in their play and laughter, who also grew up from seedlings into maturity, eventually leaving to begin their own lives in fruitful adventure.  A swing was eventually fixed to the tree when a grandson came along... again, its branches played a part in giving pleasure. Apple blossoms became a part of spring with the promise of summer fruit.  The tree has never disappointed us in its yearly seasons.


This summer has been a particularly fruitful season.  Many locals have said that fruit trees of all varieties have been extremely full in bearing fruit.  Our apple tree was no exception.  I watched how the branches became ample in produce.  Then, I saw how burdened the branches became in holding such a heavy load.  Combined with the apple weight and the heat of summer, the branches now look miserable in such pregnancy.  The photo below shows a broken branch that could not bear up under the strain put upon it by nature.  I took the photos below to explain the tree's distress.  A bounty of apples for sure but I hope the tree will survive after this summer's labor of fruit.  As I write this post, there are more branches that are in the process of breakage as they bend further to the ground with so great a load.


I would like to use the illustration of the tree and its apples and apply it to the human condition of stress in our every day life.  Imagine the apples to be stress and you are the tree.  Pressures, pulls, strains and tensions all identify stress and if too many and carried too long, can bring about a breaking point.  It has been stated that stress is one of the major causes of illness, whether emotional or physical in our human makeup.  What is a counter to stress?  How can we relieve ourselves of the
burden of stress?  Books have been written about this but what it comes down to is one thing - our individual paths to peace.  Some look for peace in unhealthy ways but end up toxic in varied types of addiction.  Some look for peace in outward pleasures only to find a temporary fix and return to the cycle of stress upon their lives.

God does give us an antidote for stress but it requires an awareness that He is bigger than the turmoil of stress.  Instead of the old saying "mind over matter", it becomes of spiritual significance to remember that we need to go one better... God is greater ...  'Greater is the One living inside of me than he who is living in the world'.   Our minds only complicate stress in its many forms, whereas the Spirit brings relief in ensuing peace.  We can be like that tree planted by the river of life referred to in my post "Current"....  http://turn-uppatch.blogspot.com/2016/08/current.html

Take time out to watch this short music video called "Greater" - it is a reminder that no matter our circumstance or condition, He is just a breath away with all that you need...   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GXI0B4iMLuU

 
As we roll into September, I hope you will join me in two weeks at The Turn-Up Patch on Monday, September 12.  Until then, here is a great little saying to ponder on... "Cherish Yesterday,  Dream Tomorrow,   Live Today".


 

Monday, August 15, 2016

Magic as Enchantment

Magic!  One of the definitions of magic is as enthralling as the name implies... "a mysterious quality of enchantment".  It can be something as enchanting as sunlight breaking through the leaves of a tree, leaving the viewer captivated with delight in its beauty and attraction.  We now how powerful tools to use in capturing such moments of magic to bear witness to God's wonderful creation of living nature.

This is the same tree that was in my last post, entitled "Current" and the photos used were taken with a Nikon digital camera.  The photos used in today's post were taken with my iPhone camera of the same tree at  different times and in varied angles.  The sun was in the right position to cast its light through the foliage and water, giving the picture an ethereal or magical effect in the play of filtered light.  It is mesmerizing moments like these that can transport the ordinary into an extraordinary viewer experience.  


We live in a day of explosive technology and the digital camera and the smart phone camera are two such inventions that are just an eye lens and shutter finger away in capturing scenes of life around us.  Both are in constant re-invention, applying science in the advancement of performance.  As it is with digital cameras, smart phone cameras are increasingly improving in capabilities and convenience.  The future may read.... "a good photograph is only a smart phone away" as zoom and wide lens features are developed in the progression of improvement for the sole purpose of photography all within a small package of the smart phone.
 

It is said that a camera is only as good as the photographer taking the picture.  Beauty lies in the eye of the beholder.  However, as technology improves, so does creativity in optimizing this technology to full potential.  I am amazed at the talent of photographers and how ingenious they become in attempting the unusual in a display of "magic" upon nature.  Fredrich van Schoor and Tarek Mawad are two such artists who are able to transform a forest into a fairyland of vibrating and luminous lights.  Please take time out and check their informative website, complete with a video that is awesome in their production of forest bio-luminescence.   http://www.bioluminescent-forest.com/ 

Another unique photography artist is Vitor Schietti who uses the process of tree lighting for his personal magic.  Here is a sample of his photos.  Read about him and see more of his photos at http://www.thisiscolossal.com/2015/10/tree-light-painting-schietti/

 
 

Come and join me at The Turn-Up Patch for another visit on Monday, August 29.  Until then, look for a bit of magic in your days and allow God to inspire the common into the exceptional....








Monday, August 1, 2016

Current

Today's post is simply entitled  "Current",  a word typically associated with movement.  This movement is in the moment; it is about progress now The below photograph of a river scene is an illustration that shows off the flow of current defined upon its waters.  I remember the feeling of peace that came as I watched the water move in gentle ripples accented by the play of light.  It reminds me of  the breath of God that stirs ripples of movement upon our spiritual lives.  If we are honest with ourselves,  there are times when movement seemingly has gone, stagnation has set in resulting in still water.   Too often we look outward anticipating an external action to stir up inward movement and when action doesn't come, leads to disappointment.  It is during such times as these to remember the character of God - the character of God whose very nature is to move upon still waters and bring life.


There are many references in scripture about water, but I chose several to use in relating to movement.  In Genesis, the very story of creation, speaks about how our God made something out of nothing.  There was emptiness, no form and darkness. That can aptly describe those inward times of stagnation in personal still waters.  But what did our Creator do?  The Spirit of God moved and He took darkness and brought forth light.  He brought forth form and substance to that which was void and empty.  Our wonderful God hovers over our still water to cause movement in new life and brings hope.



The above photos using ducks and water as an illustration of Psalm 23: 24, 23...."He makes me lie down in still waters; he restores my soul."   The ducks are in their natural habitat of water.  There they rest and are nurtured, content in the experience.   In the still waters of our soul, there is movement - a movement of healing, of restoration, to get back to the basics in the simplicity of "God and me".   It is a time to rest and allow God to expand our vision of Him and to bring forth a greater awareness of the eternal.  It is a time to be and not to do.  

One final thought before I close this message.  Most of you are familiar with Psalm 1:3: "They are strong, like a tree planted by a river..."   We gain strength during the learning process 'of being', an art of discovery in itself.   During this time of separation from the doings, we get our internal compass back.  We will be ready to produce in due season but meanwhile, symbolic as a tree, we receive nourishment from God's movement by the river of life.  We can imagine our personal leaves that bud and form that will not wither but be alive in vibrancy.  A greater enrichment occurs as we gain insight as to who we are and what really matters in our individual universe.   A tree has many leaves and God does not limit us to the familiar but rather brings forth a new day in the understanding of life abundant.  "Everything they do will succeed"  ....  In the prosperity of spirit as a tree planted by a river, the being  will propel success in the doings.  The movement of being must come first to flow as a current into doings orchestrated by our Father of Lights, who is all and in all.

 
Come, join me at The Turn-Up Patch for another visit on Monday, August 15....



Monday, July 18, 2016

Sheltering Wings

Wings!... described as a means of flight or ascent.  We use the word wings to explain the appendages existing on any flight orientated body, from birds to airplanes.  Using geese as an example, they have extremely strong wings to assist them in migratory flight.  Their wingspan is normally one and half times the size of their body and can be up to six feet in length.  Feathers on their wings are strong and stiff for protection from wind, moisture and sun.  To read more about this fascinating bird, check out a post that I wrote, entitled "Life Lessons from Geese" at  http://turn-uppatch.blogspot.com/2013/12/life-lessons-from-geese.html

I took the following photos from a vantage point of a motel room overlooking the Deschutes River in Bend.  They had no idea that they were being photographed, thanks to a trusty 50x zoom camera.  I had the chance to watch them relax, play in the water, preen their feathers, sleep and guard their own.  I captured several shots of them stretching their wings and appreciate all the more how grand a waterfowl they are.


The below photo was taken during the early morning hour.  Several of the birds decided to take a nap and tucked their long necks back into their wings covering their beaks with feathered comfort and warmth.  The third goose appears to be a "guard" as the others slept.  The bird did not attempt to leave the other two but remained alert and vigilant over them until they came out of their slumber.


This can be an illustration of what we, as God's children, can experience within the shelter of His wings. Psalm 91:4 says...."He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and protection."  Scripture has examples of many metaphors that language uses in a figurative sense to present an image.  In this particular image of feathers and wings, it is comforting to know that His faithfulness not only guards and protects but is a refuge and a hiding place for renewal and ascendancy.  Take time out to watch this beautiful video by Highland Praise singing "In the Shelter of Your Wings" and be at peace....  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vBV2WzjuhDA

Join me at The Turn-Up Patch in two weeks for a visit on Monday, August 1.... 





Monday, July 4, 2016

Respect? Within America

It saddens me to see respect  decline in America.... for God and for country - where God is marginalized and the flag is vandalized.  Other words for respect are:  regard, esteem, appreciate, consider, honor, to abide by, polite, to avoid violating.  Yes, the flag symbolizes and signals a declaration of freedom, among them being religion and speech in these United States of America.  People can say and do according to their own dictates to make a statement.  When it is not controlled by respect - honor and esteem are forgotten.  When the flag is burned and trampled, when secularism tries to minimize God...  we are in trouble folks.  When freedom is worshiped over and above the God who gave us freedom, we become a sinking society without the standard (level of excellence or quality) of respect for God, for country and for one another.  



The quote above from Ronald Reagan acknowledges that God is synonymous with America.  One cannot be separated from the other.  A great nation remembers not only the founding fathers in signing the Declaration of Independence but the dichotomy of its respectful Dependence on God.   We observe today as a national holiday in the celebration of freedom, known as July 4th - Independence Day.  I have written about this in past posts, one in particular on the American flag... link: http://turn-uppatch.blogspot.com/2013/07/identity-of-american-flag.html
I hope you read it as the message reiterates the meaning and identity of our heritage as citizens and residents in these United States of America - let us not take it for granted.  Festivities are held in communities across the country in remembrance of the cost of freedom symbolic in the American Flag.  Old Glory was birthed in revolution and arose in the midst of struggle and bloodshed to gain independence.   The celebration of July 4th is not all about picnics, parades and fireworks... it's about freedom, liberty and the birthday of our country.  It's about a sacred right and adhering to the basic premise of respect aligned to our Creator. 

Join me at The Turn-Up Patch on Monday, July 18.   I leave you with a quote from Abraham Lincoln...  "Don't interfere with anything in the Constitution.  That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties."



 


 

Monday, June 20, 2016

Talents, Towns and Glory

Living in a small rural community has its limitations that can turn a disadvantage into an advantage.  I was born and raised in city and my first exposure to small town living was in our move to Eastern Oregon.  I wasn't sure I could adapt but 40 years later, I am still alive and well!   From the onset of finding myself plunked in the middle of the John Day Valley, I became aware of the expansiveness of nature from the surrounding hills to brilliant star-studded skies.  It became more personable as time went on in the discovery of this area and the people who have also made this their home.  Small town living also emphasizes the talent that exists within many of the Grant County residents as their gifts become known.  There are amazing singers, musicians, artists, photographers, writers and poets who are transplants and natives, contributing to the uniqueness of this region.  

I'd like to introduce you to one such person, KA Simpson, pen name for Kim Chesley.  Through her poetry and 'doing for others', she makes a difference within the world of Grant County and people who have met her along the way.  With Kim's permission, I am honored to feature one of her poems entitled, "The Lord's Grandeur".....


THE LORD'S GRANDEUR
(c)  by KA Simpson 
I have a feeling of such smallness
As the wind whistles at night,
And I look out upon a sky
Lined with diamonds full of light.
And if I pull my wrap around
And venture out the door,
I feel then even smaller
Then I ever did before.
And this nighttime world that stares at me
As the wind blows in the trees,
And I smell the freshness of the earth
And shiver in the breeze,
Makes me wonder, truly, what am I
Amid the grandeur of this night?
I feel inconsequential,
As this sight in me ignites
An awareness of the Power
Behind the splendor of this scene-
And I know I'm not alone out here,
Where angels all convene.
And together we all lift our hands
In union and accord,
And let our voices
Sing the name of Jesus Christ our Lord!
And my smallness gains in stature
As I worship and am free,
To hail God as Holy Master,
Creator of all I see.

The heavens truly show the grandeur of God and how infinite He is.  The aurora borealis is another example of His Glory manifested.  The below photo and article appeared in the Daily Mail about a year ago.  The implication of the photograph is of "Christ the Redeemer" in the light of the aurora borealis. 


Please take time to read the article along with other photographs of Iceland, where they are privileged to witness the aurora borealis as we are privileged to God's color in rainbows, sunrises, sunsets and star-studded skies....
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2911437/I-light-Image-Christ-Redeemer-appears-aurora-borealis-Iceland.html


Come back  and visit The Turn-Up Patch on Monday, July 4th - which happens to be Independence Day!  Thank God for the freedoms we enjoy; let us not take them for granted.