Lost

Long evening shadows cast 
a stark, vivid veil across 
autumn’s evening sky;
tells secrets from the past
before a multitude was loss.

In days of peace with man,
when tranquility daily rose
long before the greatest lie;
then changed God’s plan,
He covered sin with clothes.

The sky now displays scars,
of mankind’s daily choice;
God sent His only Son to die
and brighten gloomy stars
to declare with clear voice:

“… and through Him to reconcile
all things to Himself, whether
things on earth or things in
heaven, having made peace
through the blood of His cross.”

Colossians 1:20

Monday: Who Cares

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Ephesians 4:32

I spent Saturday watching football. Yeah, it was cold and gloomy. I didn’t sit in the stands of a professional game, like the Greenbay Packers, or chat over the television about the last play. I sat watching my grandsons. It’s where the heart of the game first clutches the heart of a boy.

Having raised three boys myself, and now blessed with five grandsons, I have experienced their passion for the game. One of them, I won’t mention Barry’s name, could aim a ball perfectly as a toddler. I still remembered the college game my son, Jess, played after my mom died. It was the best performance game of his life. He had dedicated the game to his grandmother’s memory. Most boys have a special love for football. Boys and football seem to go together.

This weekend I saw something else displayed about the game. It wasn’t the interception made by, Barry, although that was fantastic with just a few seconds in the first half. It wasn’t even the great run Oliver, one of my younger grandsons, made at his tag-football game. It was the compassion of a young man who patiently spent a Saturday afternoon teaching six-old boys the game.

It’s Monday, you all have the opportunity to show a kindness to those you’re in contact with. Intercept that blessing, run with a Fruit of the Spirit and make a touch down that could change a life.

Fog

Yet he has not left himself without testimony: He has shown kindness by giving you rain from heaven and crops in their seasons; he provides you with plenty of food and fills your hearts with joy.”

Acts 14:17

Autumn seeps in hushed;
thick fog clings to the damp earth,
a crane flaps good-bye.

The goose overhead
honks a cranky farewell,
as birds fly south.

A lonely cricket 
plays a wistful merry tune;
spring’s eternal song.

Fall stirs emotions,
along with tumbling leaves
telling all it’s time.

Time to store nuts
or fill the pantry shelves;
thank God for His care.

Seasons simply fade,
all under God’s great design;
tell the end of time.

Monday: Sunday Scaries

Anxiety in the heart of a man causes depression, but a good word makes it glad.

Proverbs 12:25
SMILE, Jesus loves you!

What is it about anxiety that keeps us away from living peaceful lives? Is it the phone call from the doctor with the bad news which brings unrest? Or the child who’s gotten injured during a sports game and a parent’s heart wavers? Going to funerals or to hospitals aren’t usually the most inviting thing one cares to do. What about when Christmas creeps up quickly, and you haven’t purchased all those treasured gifts, then panic may run through your veins. There are so many things in our lives that can cause anxiety.

Most recently, I heard from one of my son’s, there is now a label placed on Sunday’s anxieties called “Sunday Scaries”. Evidently, it’s the condition that people have on any given Sunday as they reflect on the fact they have to go back to work on Monday.

One would think Sunday could be restful, since the Bible asks followers of Jesus Christ to set aside one day of rest to reflect on God. This day, in our culture, usually is understood as Sunday. So why are people walking around with the anxieties of what will happen on Monday the day before it comes?

May I suggest, to look at Monday as a new opportunity. If Sunday is spent contemplating on God and having good Christian fellowship, we can be filled with the right attitude as Monday comes around the corner. Mondays can be the time in which we can show the gift of helps to our employers or to those that we serve in the workforce. It can be the day we have a new challenges to share the gospel message with those who are lost in our workplace. Yes, I know there will be challenges. But if we are filled with Holy Spirit, we can allow Him to use us in a way to glorify God.

Just a reminder, one of the main reasons we’re on this earth, as believers in Jesus Christ, is to glorify God. And for the moments of anxiety, we can remember the Bible verse which talks about being concerned with each day in itself, instead of the days to come. Perhaps, our burdens will not be as difficult to bear if we remember God is with us.

“Sunday Scaries”, can be turned into “Sunday Sharing” of what God has done in our life the week before. And how we look forward to what He will do in the days ahead.

Hope you enjoy your next Sunday!

Not sure were you’re at:

Goldenrod… You should LOVE it!

Let’s solve a myth

This time of the year roadsides and meadows are filled with gold, in the form of Goldenrods (Solidago species). These marvelous late-blooming plants are very important to fall pollinators and migratory butterflies such as Monarchs. Since goldenrod’s blooming period of late summer and fall coincides with the blooming period of ragweed, they are frequently blamed for hay-fever symptoms. Some homeowners may hesitate buying goldenrods because they believe that they would cause allergy symptoms like runny and itchy nose.

Goldenrods, however, are innocent of these accusations. Their polled is heavy and sticky. It does not get blown in the wind, but sticks to visiting insects, as with other insect pollinated species. These specific characteristics of goldenrod pollen make it unlikely to make it to our respiratory system.

As mentioned the real culprit for your allergy woes is Ragweed (Ambrosia species). Ragweed is an insignificant-looking plant that blooms about the same time as goldenrods. The flowers are inconspicuous and the plants blend very well into surroundings. Ragweed species don’t contain nectar, so they are not insect pollinating plants. They rely on wind to carry their pollen. Ragweed pollen is very small and is spread by wind, aggravating many hay-fever sufferers. These plants don’t just cause allergy symptoms but also dermatitis or rash if you handle them without gloves.

https://www.tennesseenaturescapes.com/

Goldenrods abound in late summer and early fall. And so does hay fever. But guess what? Goldenrod pollen does not float in the air so it can’t get in your nose to make you sneeze. The real culprit is ragweed. And mugwort. And grasses. All of these have abundant windborne pollen.

https://edgeofthewoodsnursery.com/

When summer begins to fade, for many, seasonal allergies are just getting started. What’s really to blame? This time of year, fields of gold can be seen all over Minnesota and throughout the metro. Goldenrod, with its showy flowers, is in full bloom in August and September.

Allergy sufferers, between their sneezes and eye rubbing, frequently cast blame on the goldenrod for their suffering.

But that blame is misplaced. Goldenrod, contrary to popular belief, is NOT the culprit of most allergies this time of year. In order for pollen allergies to be activated, pollen must be windblown. However, as indicated by the bees and butterflies, goldenrod attracts these pollinators to disseminate their pollen grains – and does not rely on wind.

https://www.oakdaleent.com/goldenrod-or-ragweed-whats-worse/

True Wood

Remain in Me, and I will remain in you. Just as no branch can bear fruit by itself unless it remains in the vine, neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in Me

John 15:4

Twisted in the sands of time,
bruised and battered wood;
it’s canopy no longer stood.

See the lines of wavering wood
anguished by hardening years;
up-rooted and filled with tears.

Tarnished wood, fading years,
fallen fruit on dangling days;
dry leaves tumble, fall away.

Seek beauty in dead wood days,
dormant now in rugged timber;
a flicker and single hopeful ember.

Monday: Green with Envy

You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God.

James 4:2
He is smaller than an inch!

What is it about envy and jealousy that seem to want to take control of our lives? How many fights have ended in death because of envy? The opposite of these emotions is contentment. Knowing God is filling our needs and finding joy in what He has given to us. This should bring an attitude of gratefulness to our hearts, instead of sinful jealousies. Yet, because of sin, we always seem to want more. Jealousy and envy are, simply said, desires to have ownership of another’s possessions or progress.

The green-eyed monster saying comes straight from Shakespeare’s Othello (3.3); where the villain Iago tells Othello, “O! beware, my lord, of jealousy; it is the green-ey’d monster which doth mock the meat it feeds on.” It is said the poet’s reference is towards the green-eyed cat family. They are said to enjoy teasing their prey; seeming to love and hate them at the same time.

Jealousy is a dangerous animal, though I think not a furry cat or tiny frog, which attempts to control a person’s life. Perhaps, the nature of some cats are questionable. As for the tiny frog, he can’t help it that he is green. Is it not better to be recognized as a child of God, than as one who would do any to get what they want; it’ll never be enough, people.

May you find contentment in your life today.

“Let Them Rise” advanced readers needed

I am looking for “advanced readers” to review my book, Let them Rise, which is an early chapter book for young readers. These people will receives a free copy of my book (PDF, MOBI or EPUB in exchange for leaving an honest book review (on Amazon, Bookbub and/or Goodreads). Leave your contact information below or MS me. Your free copy should be available by the end of September. The book is only 93 pages and an easy read.

Description of the book:

Autumn has arrived, and it’s Alexis Ann’s favorite time of the year! Visit a pumpkin patch with her and experience the spooky scarecrow. Sit on a tire swing under early falling leaves and feel the freedom of flight. As the first frost arrives, so do her sad memories.  Will this new challenge be too difficult for her? 

Let Them Rise takes the reader back to the time Jesus lived. This was a period where His disciples had the spiritual gift of healing. From the story of Tabitha to the raising of Lazarus, Alexis will read of God’s great powers to heal.

This is the last book of the series Alexis Ann’s Amazing Adventures. Alexis’s new adventure will take her to an unusual place; the battle with loss in her life. Victory over grief will come from a loving God and bring her “joy in the morning”.

September Fruit

This is to My Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, proving yourselves to be My disciples.

John 15:8

Ripe, rosy, rich forest fruit
on shadowy September day;
a harvest for forest friends.

Glistening goldenrod swaying,
swinging in the tepid breeze;
amusement for buzzing bees.

Chattery chipmunks climbing
limb to limb; acorns tucked
deep within furry, puffed cheeks.

Saffron sun, gauzy cloudy gaze;
tenderly veils the fruit of fall days.
A moment to salute Summer’s farewell .

Monday: Busy as a Bee

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward.

Colossians 3:23-24

This phrase, Busy as a Bee, dates back to at least the 1300’s; such a long time ago. It can be found in The Canterbury tales by Geoffrey Chaucer: “In omen been! For ay as bisy as bees.” Bees are industrious and hard-working creatures making them good examples of work ethic.

It’s Labor Day again! It’s been a national holiday since 1894, when President Grover Cleveland signed the law to recognize the value of the workforce in America. I can’t help wondering how much our nation’s attitudes have changed towards work since 1894. Are we still busy as bees?

The Bible talks about the importance of keeping our hands busy, of providing for our families and tells us we will eat of the fruits of our labors. Work gives us a feeling of accomplishment and, at times, great joy. Yet, sometimes there is poor management. Or co-workers can be difficult; leaving us frustrated. If we could remember our work is for the Lord then there is hope of dealing with these problems on the job. Remember, you are giving a testimony of what God is doing in your life, even at work.

As for Labor Day, take a few moments to rest and thank God!