Daily Prompt: Frivolous, A Person I Never Met

Am I being frivolous to think he gave his life for me? A person I never met.

I know he is alive within me. I speak to him frequently. When I talk with him, he gives me hope and stimulates me mentally to do or feel something, especially creative. When I am tired or weak, he is there to give me that boost of energy to keep me going. At times, I will disagree with him then I will take it upon myself. What a mistake, I will silently hear him say, “trust me I will never lead you astray”. I have learned that my friend is serious and has a great value in my life. For those of you, that read this and think I am being foolish or not serious.
I would rather live my life as if there is a God and die to find out there isn’t than live my life as there isn’t and die to find out there is. As said by T D Jakes

Thank you for reading this, your comments are welcomed even if they may be frivolous.
Frivolous

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To Follow in His Footsteps

I know those footsteps by the impression it makes as you lead the way.   I feel and hear you breathe.  Your breath is like a feathery touch as it blows gently against my skin.  The slow back and forth sway of thin branches creak with each inhale and exhale of your breath.  A beam of white light spreads above the darkness on the horizon.  Patches of light fog filters the white glow.  As the sun rises and the fog lifts, a bright, clear, new day begins.  You are smiling and happy to see me.

I smell the sweetness of life flowing as you move about.  The potpourri of pines, persimmons and the musty scent of rich soil permeates the area.   The morning freshness is like a splash of water on my face.

The choir of birds sing their chorus of melodies of joy as their day begins.  It is like angels singing praise and worship as you watch over your children.  Thank you Lord for my life, it is a pleasure to serve you and follow your footsteps.

This post is in response to the daily prompt: Footsteps

Daily Post Challenge; A Drop of Words

Drop

A drop could be a very small quantity of anything.  At the end of its fall, it will leave an impression.  What are those special words you may drop on someone to leave an impression?

Are you there to pick up that small quantity of liquid that drops from the face of a person in sorrow?  A drop of kind words is an impression that may bring comfort, joy, gratitude, and compassion.

After it is dropped look for that impression.

How my prayer was answered

My friend and I volunteer to paint murals on the walls through out the hallways of the Veterans Administration hospital. The hallways were painted an institutional drab tan. Now, with painted murals, it brings life, joy, and contentment for the patients, staff and visitors as they pass through the halls.

One particular morning, I asked God for His blessing on a mural my friend and I were to paint. I prayed for direction, help and assistance to paint this mural.

Unlike my friend who is a professional artist, I am a novice painter. As like most novices we don’t see our mistakes and faults as well as others see them. Throughout the painting, my friend Stan found fault. He’d say your lines are not smooth, you need more value, use more water, or you’re holding your brush wrong. This was one of those days, he was not himself. I was ready to give it up and hand the brush over to him telling him, “if you can do it better, then you do it.” But I didn’t.

I just stood aside and watched him paint. Inside me, I pouted and I started to put myself down. I was thinking I’ll never be a good artist.

When I got home, I realized that Satan was telling me all those negative things. But, God answered my prayer from this morning. I asked Him for direction, help and to assist me. He did it through my friend Stan who told me my problems and showed me how fix them.

It was then I realized God was there the whole time as I painted. I seemed to have given up not only in myself, but in my faith, trust and belief.

God was there the whole time. My lesson is to focus on God not on myself. I pray this story may help others.

Below are a few murals we painted at the Veterans Hospital

 

Hermit Thrush

20141212-Hermit Thrush

I get great pleasure in photographing birds. It’s not just to capture the detail, light, or composition of a picture. The enjoyment is the outdoors and to learn from the animals, in my case the birds. Like this picture of the Hermit Thrush, food is there for the picking. They eat what they need and leave some for others. Nature provides the material, source of nutrients and water for their survival.  Not only does God provide for all animals and insects, He is there for all who believe.

House Sparrow

House sparrow

The common house sparrow adapts easily to environmental changes. They are seen in many geographical areas. We know the sparrow existed in the Arab countries. In the Biblical reading, Jesus used the sparrow to show that God loved all his creatures. It was ceremonially clean and eaten as food by the poor.

These birds are not native to America. They first came to Brooklyn, New York in the 1850’s. Now, the house sparrow is a year round species in the continental United States.   Some people consider these birds undesirable. They make a nuisance by nesting in man-made structures, especially in the eaves of homes.

Like the elephants and hippos, these little creatures enjoy dust baths. They are often seen creating little dust storms as they roll in the dirt. When the sparrows move on the ground they hop instead of walk like other birds. The adult sparrows are mainly vegetarian, but the young birds, when first hatched, feed on insects for their diet.

A beautiful back yard bird

With the harsh weather that’s covered much of the mid-Atlantic this winter thoughts of spring might seem like an impractical idea.   Spring break will be happening soon. 

Here it is February.  I noticed crocus leaves have spiked through the frozen ground and swollen buds are showing on the limbs of trees.  Even the cardinals, one of the most colorful and abundant backyard birds has awakened.  Although their feathers are not as colorful presently, come early spring they will display their full mating suit of feathers as seen in this picture I shot in early spring last year.  This is the time the master artist displays His rainbow of colors. 

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Parent and Young Barred Owls

I captured this adult and juvenile barred owl along the Nolan trail in Newport News, VA.  The perimeter of the Nolan trail surrounds Lake Maury; which is within a mature, mixed forest of large trees of hemlock, maple, oak, hickory, and beech.   When I first spotted this fledging owl, it was roosted on the branch.  Normally, an owl will sleep during the day and are not very active.  But, this young guy was alert and constantly looking around.  I figured it was waiting on its parent to come back.  So I set up my tripod and camera and waited about two hours.  Finally, out of nowhere, the adult owl appeared along side the juvenile owl.  This was a great capture of a barred owl nurturing its young, the next generation of these beautiful birds.

Unlike human love, animals’ internal love appears natural.  Humans make the power of love so difficult.  Before God created man and woman, He created the animal kingdom.  Maybe we are to learn from the animals.  I see in this picture love, joy, kindness, compassion, and comfort.

By Richard Smith
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The Osprey’s Catch: One Fish at a Time

April, the month the ospreys arrive from their winter range to begin the cycle of life. I captured the below photo in Newport News, VA at the spillway where Lake Maury overflows into the James River. Two hours before high tide the ospreys flock near the spillway to capture their bountiful food of herring, shad and other bait fish. As the tide moves in, the fish swim through the spillway into Lake Maury. In a tight circle, the osprey flies about 10 to 30 feet above the water’s surface. When the osprey spots its prey, it does an aerial dance. Its wings flutter to hold its position from the winds current. The ospreys yellow eyes are intense on its prey. With its wings folded it dives into the water. Within seconds the osprey swoops out of the water with a fish snagged in its talons.

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Written and photographed by:  Richard Smith