My husband climbed Mt. McKinley in 1977 and took many pictures of this beautiful and majestic mountain through the years. I have seen many “reflection” pictures in my life, but this one is my all-time favorite! The photo clip to the left is actually upside down. If it were not for the color differences, it might be impossible to tell. The shape is identical.
Obviously, what we think we see is not always what we are really observing. Our completely clear sight will come to us only when we reach our final perfection in Heaven. In the meantime, we should continually strive to discern what God has for us to do in this life, as we travel on our journey to the next, however long or short it may be. Commit yourself to live your life this week in a manner that clearly reflects Christ’s presence to others.
… when time with me is disappearing, I want to be alone with God … Rev. Johnson Oatman, Jr.
Glacier ice comes and goes. There was reportedly a 1000’ thick sheet of it covering the valley where we live, sometime long ago. Those of us who live here are unashamedly glad it is all gone. This picture of an iceberg from the glacier at Portage, Alaska does not portray what you would see if you visited there today. Portage Glacier is not at all the same now as it was when my husband took this photo.
Wherever you may travel or live on this Earth, nothing today is exactly the same as it was even 30 or 40 years ago. Age to age, nothing remains the same, except God. Our planet is finite, our bodies are finite. Our cars and our houses and our highways rot and rust and crumble over time. Only God remains the same – from the beginning of time throughout eternity, we can count on His presence and His love in our ever-changing lives and world!
But faith sees a light, yes, a beacon light … D. K. W.
This was such a “gray day” that the color photo almost looks like a “grayscale” image. The scenery is deceptively uncolored. The sun was very close to breaking out of the clouds, but was not quite making it through. This beautiful vista was literally a “landscape in grayscale” in a full-color world.
There are no “gray areas” in the Gospel. The deceiver loves to pull God’s people away from Him with lies and snares and subtle deceptions. We must be diligent to know God’s Word and to use it to illuminate and “clarify” all information we take in, whatever the source. Lord, let there be no “gray areas” in our lives. May we set our hearts and lives on “black and white” and clearly show the world who our God is!
If at times I do not see Him, I will trust and give Him praise … J. E. French
When I was choosing photos to pair with pre-Christmas verses, the intense coloration of this sunset really “spoke” to me about what an angel visit in the middle of the night might look like. It is as “unearthly” as any sunset photo I have ever taken, I think. I do have another “unearthly” looking sunset photo, but it has the appearance of a frightful monster, so I did not even consider including it in this little devotional book.
Can you imagine being Mary? Sure, she believed in God. But to have Him single her out for perhaps the most important “mission” ever assigned in history? Wow! Would that we could be so obedient and faithful.
The night is dark and I am far from home; Lead Thou me on! – John H. Newman
Although this photo was not taken in the “holy land,” this landscape in Utah seemed to me to represent what that area might have looked like at certain times of the year. Christmas is coming. Because my youngest son was born on December 16 (he was due on the 23rd), for the past 21 years, it has been hard for me to “get into” Christmas preparations until after Tyler’s birthday on December 16.
I am so awed by the fact that Jesus was “proclaimed” in the Old Testament so many times. Although I was raised in the church, I never knew until adulthood that the events in Jesus’ life were already made known throughout the Old Testament, long before He came to Earth to save us.
O Love that wilt not let me go, I rest my weary soul in Thee … George Matheson
This shot was taken on Lake Roosevelt on the Columbia River one summer as some friends from church shared a relaxing outing with us on their houseboat. As one cruises along the river here, there is no doubt how the land is raised up to separate the waters from the waters!
What a joy it is to share time with likeminded brothers and sisters in Christ, whether it be actively working in ministry for the Kingdom or lounging in the sun on the deck of a houseboat praising the Master Creator right in the middle of some of his finest “work”!
He will keep me till the river rolls its waters at my feet … F.H. Rowley
Many circumstances, people, or events can make us “weary” today. It is not just a matter of being tired. In fact, our weariness oftentimes has absolutely nothing to do with physical fatigue.
As children of the Most High God, we must be conscious of when we are beginning to be weary in our souls. It can sneak up on us while we are “busy for the Lord.” We take on too many commitments, we spread ourselves too thin – and even in a good cause like God’s service, there have to be limits on how far we stretch ourselves and our resources.
Perhaps you are providing emotional support – or meals or transportation – for a friend or relative who is battling cancer – and losing the battle. Maybe your children have gone off to college and you are struggling with being satisfied in an empty nest. (Hopefully, there is still a spouse in your nest with you, so it really isn’t EMPTY). Or did you say, “yes” too many times at church and find yourself on too many committees?
Just watching the news on television can make us weary in this 21st century. There is so much “bad news” and so little good. I can’t help but think that the media hype is geared toward making us think there is no good news, rather than it being a true representation of the life that goes on around us every day.
Sheltered as we are in our small town, in our conservative county in a liberal state, we find it hard to believe that things could be so very different across the country in cities where violence seems common and ordinary and people don’t seem to have a clue what life is really all about.
Our daily prayers for our nation and her people seem to fall away with no hope for a return of the America that we knew, or the rebuilding of the moral fabric that made this country the greatest in the world.
Be it weariness from spiritual challenges, weariness from schedules bursting at the seams, or weariness from your day-to-day responsibilities and interactions, please know that you can rest in the One who holds the universe in His hands. Don’t lose sight of God at the head of your household, at the head of your church, and at the head of your workplace.
He has asked us to rest in Him. Who are we to say, “No?”
No special lenses, no camera filters, this photo just “happened” as I was taking pictures of a sunset through a smoky haze from distant wildfires near Wilder, Idaho. I have never seen a photo like this, yet all four of the pictures I took that evening have exactly the same peculiar halo draping over the setting sun.
If we view the world through the “lens” of Christianity, we will see things differently than those around us who are not Christians. We sometimes experience disappointment when people do not respond immediately to our sharing of the Gospel, or to the sharing of experiences we have had in which we credit God with a success or a victory over illness. We forget that those who do not know Him do not see things through the same “filter” we do. Pray for others and share Christ with them, but do not allow yourself to be disappointed if the “results” you think you perceive are not what you expected. You may never know until you get to Heaven whether your message or effort changed a life.
and to eyes that long were sealed was the glorious light revealed … Emma M. Johnson
Excerpted from Selkirk Mountain Inspiration 1 – Week Forty Five
When I open my eyes in the morning to a scene like this one, lying snuggled up comfortably in my bed, I wonder if this is what it will look like when Jesus comes! Someday I will know, but until then I have to keep marching on – God has work for me here.
There are many who don’t understand the evangelical Christian’s concept of looking forward to leaving this fallen world and heading to our true home – Heaven. They can’t comprehend the celebration of a loved one passing into glory and away from this life. When I see the “grave markers” in novelty catalogues imploring a loved one to come back down here, I shudder. Why would anyone wish to take seeing Jesus and spending the rest of their life in glory away from someone they cherish? I realize it is all a matter of perspective. I am not planning to rush things along in any way, but I will be delighted to finally see Jesus face to face when He calls me home!
We’re marching upward to Zion, the beautiful city of God … Isaac Watts
Excerpt from Selkirk Mountain Inspiration 1 – Week Four
Boy, has He made winter and summer. There will be some of you who don’t experience four distinct seasons as we do, but you will likely have visited somewhere that winter “happens.” We are actually near a ski resort town and very much enjoy winter outdoor sports. Snow is fascinating stuff – but we do receive comfort from knowing it is only “temporary.”
In God’s infinite wisdom, He created our planet with varying seasons. Each hemisphere mirrors the seasons of the other, and the balance creates the perfect environment in which humankind can live. Praise God for His wisdom and mercy in the seasons of the year.
Over the highlands of glory rolleth the great new song … Walter O. Cushing