In the Barren Desert

pine-twoWalking out into my friend’s front yard, I photographed the view.

Tall pine trees grew stately toward the sky, ever green in the middle of winter.

Just before the trees, foliage that had succumbed to the cold had turned a rusty, yet golden, brown.

What a stark difference between the two.

God speaks in Isaiah 41:19:

“I will plant trees in the barren desert–cedar, acacia, myrtle, olive, cypress, fir, and pine.”

When I think of a barren desert, I don’t think of tall, healthy trees being able to grow there.

What a stark difference between the two–trees growing where a barren desert once was.

No matter what the circumstances are in our lives right now, God is able to renew, remake and restore.

There can be tall, lush pine trees where only dry sand once blew in the wind.

Don’t give up hope—God is in control of every desert you encounter, AND He is the creator of every tall tree.

For Everything

bookmark3-1-1-1-1-2-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1-1_zps08a42f53

On my way home from the grocery store, traffic came to a halt on the highway.

Every now and then, the vehicles in front of me would move forward—a little.

I didn’t know what the cause was, but I went into flexibility mode and began to sing along with my car stereo.

I repeated the song several times because I was still really wanting to sing it.

As I sang, I got my camera and started taking pictures of my surroundings.

Not always having the time to just stop and take in the beauty along the side of the road, this was an unforeseen delight.

Tall pine trees lined most of the road.

Wildflowers and grapevines, fence posts and wire—it was all so quiet.

As I sang the lyrics that dealt with trying and failing, realizing we’re not who we think we are sometimes and wanting to just be centered on God and held by His Spirit, I enjoyed the blessing of seeing some of the beauty He had created up close.

As it turned out, I think I was out on that stretch of highway for maybe 30-45 minutes, creeping forward a little at a time.

Coming to the end of it, roadwork and only a one lane opening was probably the main cause of the delay.

When I left the store, I didn’t know that I would be given the opportunity for reflection and solitude.

A gift from God on a sunny, late afternoon….

~

Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord,  always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

–from Ephesians 5:19-20

*

Click image to enlarge.
giving thanks