“And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Phillipians 4:7)
Peace? Control? Certainty? If we don’t have control or certainty, can we have peace?
The myth of certainty and the illusion of control are out the window as we face the uncertainty and loss of control brought on by the Coronavirus pandemic. If we think we are in control and certain of outcomes, does that not make us like God? Isn’t that the devil’s greatest temptation? To be like God? Where do we find peace?
When things are uncertain, or upsetting, I look to Jesus’ words for comfort and guidance. He said, “Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27). Jesus knew that fear paralyzes us and hinders our ability to respond effectively to the challenges of life. Fear also lowers our immune system’s ability to ward off sickness.
That said, in these uncertain times when nothing of the world is what we have, until now, considered ‘normal’, comfort is to be found in scripture. God and his word are the only certain things upon which we can rely. I also find peace and comfort in the world around me….not the infectious COVID-19 world, but in the natural world.
Because…..”All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made.” (John 1:3) Thus, the natural world, made by God, is of great comfort.
Today I will share some images with you that, I hope, will bring YOU some semblance of peace and comfort. I do not live in a fantasy world where all is well just because I wish it to be, but in the real world where sickness, death, financial issues, hatred, anger and all the other symptoms of our fallen world exist. Therefore, I NEED to know that God is there, that God loves me, and that, no matter what, God is in control. ‘Nuff said.
It is spring, or nearly so, and the crocus, ferns and other early plants are bursting forth. This is all part of the order of the universe, made by God.
God cares for all of creation from the smallest Lichen to
Majestic mountains. Think of the power behind the creation of this mountain. He cares no less for you.
I love seeing as much of the whole landscape as I can, and sometime make images of the larger picture. However, there is something to be said for looking more closely at the parts that make up that bigger picture.
I like to take a closer look at the veins of leaves or
the seed heads of grasses. I find all of it fascinating. And nearly beyond my comprehension of how wonderfully it is made. Without the knowledge that He created it all, it would truly be beyond me.
There is order in the natural world. The sun rises. The sun sets. The moon rises. The moon sets. Sometimes the sun comes up before the moon goes down. This was one of those times…October, 7:15 a.m. in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Utah.
Actually, all the images you see here were taken in that 1.9 million acre wilderness. Obviously, I was only able to be in a fraction of the area in 10 days. I must return someday.I love to make images of trees, large, small, dead, alive, or dying. All serve a purpose, and each has its own beauty. Even the trees that don’t quite make it as a tree, but only as scrub brush or shrubs have their own kind of beauty.
These ‘trees’ are only scrub brush in the desert sands. However, where there is water, there are real trees, as evidenced in the left side of the image. There is a creek there, which nourishes the trees that grow along its banks.
I made this image for a couple of reasons. First it reminds me of the cycle of life. Secondly, I see it as a color palette, perhaps as a sweater, or a piece of jewelry, or maybe as the inspiration for a quilt. My computer software lets me pick colors, then gives them the Pantone equivalent. This is helpful in choosing materials for a project.
This palette is done in my computer software. I chose to have 7 colors from the image because I would need that many to make a Fair Isle sweater.
This palette was done online through a company called Canva which lets you upload an image and their software chooses your palette. The 3rd and 4th ones in this palette are the same, or nearly so, as a couple of the colors in my palette.
As you can see there are many ways I see the world around me, and many ways that I can use what I see. Primarily though, I am at peace in these surroundings, and only need to remember: God is in control and God loves me, even when I am not out there. For that matter, even when I am not very lovable!
Now, May God’s peace be with you in the days ahead.