Taking a closer look at God's gifts...

Monday, January 17, 2011

Coming attractions

I was in Florida visiting my dad and his wife. The days were beautiful--warm and breezy, the azure sky filled with unbelievable cloud formations. Everywhere I looked were signs of God's great masterpiece of Creation. Green grass, flowers of every color and description, towering palm trees, ancient oaks with ghostly Spanish moss dripping from their boughs, herons and other water birds, and the ever-present anticipation of a gator or two. (I never did see one, but maybe next time.) Just when I thought the day (and the reminders of His glory were winding down, I walked outside and spotted this sunset over the roof of a nearby house.

It seemed to say, "Not yet, Deb. Just because the sky turns black and the temperatures cool, even though the sun is hiding for the night and my Creation will soon be lit by only the light of the moon and stars--that doesn't mean the signs of my power and love are waning. I'm just displaying them in an even more magnificent way. Use this sunset as a preview of coming attractions."

Thank You, God, and good night.

See you along the trail....

Thursday, January 13, 2011

God's Calling Card

Finding an example of beauty in otherwise mundane surroundings is a favorite pastime of mine. I ran across this leaf print on the paved driveway of my sister and brother-in-law. While they have a perfectly nice driveway, it's not the first place I would think of to look for proof of God's love.

Pickin's had been slim that day. The glorious colors of fall had faded, the trees now bare, their formerly colorful leaves decaying on the ground. The sky was overcast; it was chilly and damp. I'd just about given up finding anything of beauty in such drabness, when there it was, right in front of me. Well, right in front of me at my feet, that is. While I was hanging my head in disappointment that nothing beautiful remained of the autumn, I spotted this etching. It's not a fossil, a prehistoric painting, or anything remotely valuable, aside from the assurance it gives me that God will go to any lengths to provide glimpses of His glory in everything, everywhere. It's simply an outline left by the chemicals in the leaf transferred by decay and water and cold temps, I imagine, to the canvas of mundane pavement beneath my feet.

It struck me (again) how God uses absolutely everything for good, and that includes the fading glory of a leaf that had already brought joy and promise in the spring, lushness and shade over the summer months, and a spectacular display of jewel tones during the fall. Seems to me that's enough to ask of a leaf, but God didn't think so. As a last little reminder that He's in everything we see, hear, smell, touch, and taste, He left His calling card. And in so doing, He used even the decay of one of His creations to create something of beauty and uniqueness.

Makes me wonder just how glorious we're going to be when we gather in our new bodies for all eternity. If He did this with a dead leaf and concrete, what do you think He'll do with His very own children, created in His image?

See you along the trail...