Saturday, May 24, 2014

Discoveries on a walk by the river....

This afternoon Ken and I decided to take a walk (think photo shoot for Ken) along the Fox River near our home.  It was one of those truly beautiful days.  Pleasantly warm (in the 70's), blue skies, white puffy clouds, soft breezes.  A perfect day for a walk by the river.   I admit that I was not all that anxious to go on this walk.  I am on my feet most of every work day, and lately, on Saturday and Sunday all I want to do is lay and rest.  But, I agreed to go on this walk.  It was good to be out in nature.   As we started across a bridge over the river, we stopped to look down at this very interesting swirling water caused by the current around the pillars of the bridge.  Suddenly, Ken motioned me to stop and be quiet.  There, just a couple of feet from us, just under the railing on the bridge support, was this amazing little bird.   There were flocks of these birds (which we have not been able to identify) and they were "fishing" by skimming the water of the river.  They would swoop down and skim along, then suddenly soar up.  They have a really distinctive yellow chest and a long "V" shaped tail.   This little bird was very aware of us, but just sat there.  You could hear chorus of bird songs coming from under the bridge and it was clear that the birds were swooping down under the bridge.  They must have had nests on the rails of the bridge.  This little bird was a "nest watcher".  He or she was keeping track of all the activity going on as people passed over their home, walking or biking over that bridge. 

I love the picture of the quiet, patient waiting.  Just doing a very necessary job.  While everyone else was off eating and playing.  It reminded me of my post last night.  Contentment.  Isn't it wonderful how Jesus speaks to us in nature?  I love how he knew exactly what I needed to see, to be reminded of my lesson from yesterday.   Several times another bird would "stop by" and check on that bird.  At first we thought there might be something wrong with this guy because it was sitting so still.  But before long, off it flew to join in the swoop and skim.   And another bird took over the "nest watching duty".  Yes, I want to be that contented little bird, just doing it's job. 

A little further down the trail we came upon this old small lighthouse tower.  I saw this from quite a distance and thought it was just lovely.  As I got closer,  all I could see were the pattern of the cracks through out the entire structure. 
It's sort of amazing that this tower is still standing.  There are some very wide gaps in some of the cracks and it is clear that some cracks have already been repaired (see the white lines on the top half of the tower).  I love this picture!  It is such a great reminder of the beauty that exists in our problems, our scars, our defects.  I love that Jesus is in the process of closely examining us so that all of those "cracks" that appear as we walk through life, can be filled up and repaired, as He fills us up.  I know that there are plenty of times when I am thinking that people are not really seeing the real me.  They are only looking at the distant view.  I guess that I might look pretty okay from far away.  But if you were to get closer....really get to know me..... you would see lots and lots of cracks and scars.  And here's the thing.  I know that all those problems, just disappear because of Jesus living inside of me.  The best part is that Jesus doesn't see those cracks anymore either!  Because of his love, and his grace, covered with his blood, I am whole and secure.  I don't have to be afraid of falling apart.  I love that some of those scars are still a bit visible to other people.  Each of these little fissures are part of my testimony.  There is a road map of my life story told in those lines. 
Yes, I am very grateful for the walk this afternoon.  I will heed the reminder to be still and practice contentment as I do my job.  I will also be more willing to let my "scars" show a bit more, when people get close to me.  It is a good reminder to be willing to share my testimony...with those who might notice the telltale signs of a repair job in my life. 
Jesus, thank you for the wonders of nature.  Holy Spirit, thank you for this blog.  Just thinking about my day and sharing my life has allowed me to learn so much!  Thank you!  What a great gift it is to see and understand more deeply, all that you are doing in me.   Jesus, bless all who read this blog and encourage them to be willing to see and share their own scars.  Holy Spirit, give me the opportunity to share all that Jesus has done for me.   Amen

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