“In a far-off land the LORD will manifest himself to them. He will say to them, ‘I have loved you with an everlasting love. That is why I have continued to be faithful to you.” Jeremiah 31:3 (NET)
In my travels near & far over many years, I have often found things in nature shaped like a heart. Each time I am reminded of how much God loves me & you and is always making Himself known to us.
I am also reminded that He does not give up on us. He is faithful to help us when we call out to Him.
Even when I am off in a dozen different directions, scarcely giving Him a thought. He is thinking about me. So I take a minute to focus on His heart. Our amazing God & Creator loves His creation, you and I, made in His Image…and I pause, take a deep breath…the very breath He gives me…and I praise Him! He is worthy to be praised!
Jesus tells us to abide in Him. Not just a suggestion, but a command.
“Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me.” John 15:4
Abide. What does that mean.
The dictionary definitions are—1: to remain in, to stay stable or fixed 2: to continue in something, to persist, to pursue 3: to tarry, to linger
We need to be connected to the vine. As a branch, it cannot get nutrients without being attached. I remember growing cucumbers. We put up a fence for the vine to grow and as it branched out the tiny cucumbers began to grow. Some grew this way and some went that way. I went out a few days later hoping to get some for my salad.
On one side of the fence I found several yummy cucumbers, but on the other side, I saw shriveled up cucumbers, smaller than a few days earlier. There was no fruit, or vegetables in this case. What happened??
Looking closer, I discovered that one of the branches, as it went over the fence, it got caught and broke off from the vine. Without the nutrients and support from the vine, the cucumbers shriveled up and died.
When we are not attached to Jesus, the vine…we too will not bear fruit. We need to stay attached, to tarry in His Presence.
Abide can also mean to tarry. It reminds me of the song, “In the Garden”“I come to the garden alone While the dew is still on the roses And the voice I hear, falling on my ear The Son of God discloses And He walks with me And He talks with me And He tells me I am His own And the joy we share as we tarry there None other has ever known”
Oh to tarry in the Presence of Jesus, what a sweet picture.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he (or she) is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NKJV)
Are you in a dark place? Feeling overwhelmed? Are you trying to change? Are you trying to do things the way God has called you to do them…and yet no results? You see no difference?
Hold on. Just as the Monarch caterpillar waits patiently within its’ chrysalis to be transformed…so are you being transformed. Being a child of God makes you a new creation. The old ways of the flesh have passed and the ways of the Spirit are emerging.
Don’t get me wrong, it takes time to change. God has a much different time table than we do. Be patient.
Just like in the picture. The beautiful Monarch butterfly seemingly hidden, cannot see the beauty of it’s wings. It is dark in there. She has to be still & wait. No wriggling & fussing like I sometimes do.
We too, must wait and TRUST our CREATOR & FATHER GOD. We must have FAITH that He knows what He is doing.
Take a closer look, the black outline of the wings are showing! Just a few more days. Breaking forth from the darkness is so close! If the Monarch would quit now, it would miss the new creation it will become. You can be so close to emerging from your dark place too!
You & I are beautiful, new creations in CHRIST. Maybe in your darkness, you cannot see your changes. I can see the beauty of your wings. Just wait. God has so much more for you!
One afternoon when I was in Aruba, I met this girl (I think she’s a girl). She was hanging out at the pizza place and when I walked by, she came over to the edge of the deck and watched me closely. I took a couple of pictures and this one makes me think she is saying, “Hey, this is my good side!”
It makes me think of how wonderful God made all things. The creativity in this iguana, all the iridescent colors, the spikes, and the scales. As I was looking at the scales, I noticed several different types on the same iguana!
Doing research I learned that Iguanas have varying types of scales covering different areas of their body, for example, there are some large round scales scattered around the neck area and they overlap. The scales on the top trunk of their body are thicker and more tightly packed than on the belly. The scales have a variety of colors that seem to glow in the sunlight. I noticed a white button sized bump under her neck area. What is that? It is a round scale known as a sub-tympanic shield or helmet scale. Some biologists speculate that it is used as a ‘bluff’ eye to ward off predators. Neat!
God created this iguana with such beauty but also equipped her to survive the Aruba heat. She finds shade under bushes or uses her razor sharp claws to quickly climb in the trees. She is far from defenseless. Part of her defense is her tail. On average over half her length is her tail. She uses it for balancing when climbing, as a wavelike propellant while swimming, and as a formidable whip-like weapon. She is also a master of disguise, using camouflage to hide from predators. So cool!
Wonderfully made and equipped to thrive in her environment. So are you and I.
We are wonderfully made. Our Father God says so.
“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.” Psalm 139:14 (ESV)
Created in His Image. God’s Image.
“So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.” Genesis 1:27 (NIV)
I will praise God for all the beauty as I look around this earth He created for us! I am thankful I got to spend some time really looking at the beauty in this girl and she was happy to show me her best side!
Oh, my naughty chickens. Not all of them. Most of them listen to me. Not Black Beauty (BB) a Black Jersey Giant & Pibs (Pain in bum sometimes) a beautiful Ameraucana mix. Strikingly beautiful. They have wandered before. They know me but they don’t listen to my voice.
I am the happy owner of 12 chickens, 11 hens and 1 rooster. I have had most of these girls and boy for five years. I feed them, water them, clean there coop, shovel their yard in winter, protect them and talk to them. They know my voice, they will follow me or at least I thought they would.
Three days ago, I let them out of their enclosed yard and let them free range. I try to do that so that they can eat the ticks and other insects that are around. Not everyday, but some days. Around 10 am, I heard the chickens squawking and carrying on…a different sound. I knew something was up. I looked out my front door and a red-tailed hawk with a big wing span glided over head. He or she was looking for a fat, tasty breakfast. “Not today”, I said!
I went back in and grabbed a loaf of bread, hurrying back to their fenced in yard. I called my girls and they came out from under our back deck and followed me…most of them.
Nine hens and my Bantam rooster with Little Red leading the way. She is my favorite hen and has been with me 6 years. I tossed bread crumbs inside the enclosure and they followed Red’s lead and dashed in…all except BB & Pib.
They came out from hiding but meandered across the lawn, oblivious to the danger and started pecking the grass. I called and called and they barely looked up. Now I had another dilemma. I had to close the door to keep the ten in but then these two could not get back in. Sure hawk breakfast.
I closed the door, saved some bread and went to shoo my rebels in. I went around behind them and started moving them towards safety. They got close to the fence, so I opened the door hoping they would join the others. Nope. They ran to the other end of the yard and paid no attention to me. Every time I got close they would scoot around into the bushes.
This went on for some time. No luck. Finally I said, “You are on your own girls. The hawk is looking to eat you and I am trying to protect you. You need to listen to my voice. Follow me. You are my chickens and I need to keep you safe. Why won’t you listen?!”
Just as soon as the words were out of my mouth, I thought of Jesus and His words to us, to me. Listen to My voice. Follow Me. I will save you. You are Mine.
Why didn’t I listen all those times? Maybe it was because I didn’t think I was in danger. I don’t see the big picture. He does.
Just like my girls, disobedient & (seemingly) blissfully unaware of danger; I have tried to forge my own path, my own way. Trouble in the making.
I watched my girls from the window & I did go out a bit later and BB & Pib went into the coop door that I left open. Away from where the ten were. I crept in, closed the door behind me and picked them up. I put them in with their friends, again telling them they need to listen to my voice. To follow me next time. We shall see.
For me, I remember that Jesus is the True Shepherd and we are His sheep. I am His. IAMHIZ
“And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice.” John 10:4 NKJV
Thanks for joining me! My name is Tami and I am so happy you found my blog! This blog is dedicated Jesus Christ and the hope I find in Him. I love nature and each of God’s creations teaches me a life lesson. Just like the beautiful Monarch caterpillar you see me with here (more about this and my trip to Aruba in a future post!), we go through different parts of our “life cycle”. As we journey together, I will share how Jesus has changed me, breathed His Spirit into my life and given me hope when all seemed hopeless. Feel free to come back as often as you like!