Wise Choices

Wise choices will watch over you.
    Understanding will keep you safe.

—Proverbs 2:11

 

 

While photographing my rose bush this afternoon, I suddenly saw the tiniest little green frog.

Huddled up between the pink petals of a bloom, he had taken shelter.

Surrounded by beauty, he was protected in many ways.

 

Our choices have a definite effect on our lives.

If we make wise choices, we reap the benefits.

If we search for understanding that comes from God, we will avoid many troubles.

The understanding that comes from God will keep us safe from the consequences of poor choices.

 

 

 

 

 

 

wise choices

A Glass Darkly

 

There is an old hymn titled, “We’ll Understand It Better By and By”  written by Charles Albert Tindley.

Here are some of the lyrics:

Trials dark on every hand,
and we cannot understand
all the ways of God would lead us
to that blessed promised land;
but He guides us with his eye,
and we’ll follow till we die,
for we’ll understand it better by and by.

 

Trials, hardships.

Storms.

Arguments.

Illnesses.

They make our vision dark and confusing.

We may ask ourselves why God would lead us to live with Him someday through a journey that looks like the one we’re on.

Sometimes, it is difficult to understand.

Yet, He does guide us and we must follow Him.

We will understand the “whys” of our lives later on.

1 Corinthians 13:12 reads,

“For now we see through a glass, darkly;

but then face to face:

now I know in part;

but then shall I know

even as also I am known.”

 

 

 

 

It’s hard to see at times, looking through a glass.

The images are skewed and our perception is weak.

There will be a day when the story of our own life will be clear.

We will understand it better, by and by.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

glass darkly

That the Hawk Soars

Is it by your understanding that the hawk soars,

Stretching his wings toward the south?

—Job 39:26

 

Today, I looked out my back window and saw a red shouldered hawk in the misty rain.

Taking my camera out into the back yard, I tried to be as inconspicuous as possible as I sought to photograph him.

I have come to recognize their call, as it is distinct and loud.

Beautifully marked with an array of patterned colors in their feathers, they seem to project a stateliness as they perch.

God has made thousands of creatures, both great and small.

Each one is to His perfect liking.

I watched the hawk fly down to the ground and back up again.

The rain was increasing, so I finally left him to welcome the evening without me.

God tells the hawks what to do–where they should fly, how to build a nest.

It’s not by my understanding.

There are times when I don’t understand how God is working in my life or the lives of others, but I know that His ways are not my ways.

I am limited.

He is limitless….

 

 

 

your-understanding

Trust In

Trust in the LORD with all your heart And do not lean on your own understanding.

—Proverbs 3:5

 

My husband and I were spending the day at the ocean.

We decided to buy tickets for a boat taxi.

When tickets are purchased, the boat taxi will take groups of people to certain destinations on the coast and come back at later times to pick them up.

At a stop we had chosen, we got off the boat and walked a short distance to a road.

I had my cell phone with me, so I consulted a GPS application on it.

We had been told of a waterside restaurant not far away.

Looking it up on the GPS, I selected “walking” as my mode of transportation.

Faithfully, the instructions and maps provided led us to our destination.

The route involved walking down a dirt path/road with trees that made a canopy overhead.

Could this really be the short hike to a restaurant?

It didn’t feel like it was, but we needed to trust the GPS.

After awhile, we came upon a park and finally, the restaurant.

If we had decided to go another way that might have seemed better, we might not have made it there at all.

Proverbs 3:5 tells us to trust in the LORD will all our hearts. We are not to lean on our own understanding.

God may lead us to a “rural path” in life when what we’d expected was a nicely paved city street.

When that happens, we must trust that He knows exactly where our destination is.

A GPS system can be flawed and sometimes there can be problems.

God’s direction, however, is never flawed.

We can always trust Him.

 

 

trust

On Your Own

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

If you were going to climb a pretty tall mountain, what would you take with you?

How would you dress?

Whatever you might list as clothing essentials for your trip, most of the articles would be fail to be as important as  your shoes.

Think of it—climbing up the mountain wearing a special, pocketed vest to hold important items, a hat to shield you from the sun, rugged trousers, a good belt—you’re all set, right?

There’s just one problem, though.

You’re barefooted….

“I can do this,” you think.

The first hour or so of incline isn’t so bad.

But little by little, the path becomes more rocky.

The terrain before you promises only to be worse.

So, what do you do?

You resolve to keep going, ignoring the pain and focusing on how smart you were to have brought a hat and worn study pants.

Another hour goes by, but your pace has slowed.

Occasionally, you have seen other climbers passing you by.

They were wearing hiking boots….

Isn’t it strange how we would never set out to climb a mountain barefooted, yet we think we can ascend through life without God’s help, determined to believe that we have secured all the help that we might need on our own?

Even when things get tough, we resolve to keep going, ignoring the pain and focusing on how smart we were to have planned for our lives on our own, doing only what we thought was best, without including Him.

Proverbs 3:5-6 instructs us:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;
 In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He shall direct your paths.

*

Click image to enlarge
on your own

The Unfolding

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

The banana tree in my back yard was getting ready to unfold a new leaf.

A sizable water droplet clung delicately to it, reflecting sunlight and its surroundings with crisp detail.

The leaves look so very different when they are completely unfolded and spread out.

My tree has several happy looking leaves.

If I had never owned a banana tree, I am doubting that I would have been able to identify a photo like the one that I took of this newly emerging leaf.

At the proper time, it would unfold and then it could be understood and recognized for what it was.

When we read the Bible, we “unfold” it.

It gives us understanding.

It gives us comfort.

It gives us direction.

It gives us light.

If we do not unfold the Bible, we may not recognize it for what it is—

God’s words to us.

*

The unfolding of Your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple.

—Psalm 119:130

*

Click image to enlarge.

unfolding

All Understanding

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

Rejoice in the Lord always.

Again I will say, rejoice!

Let your gentleness be known to all men.

The Lord is at hand.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;  and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

—Philippians 4:4-7

*

Click image to enlarge.

peace frame

Trust in the Lord

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

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
 in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will make your paths straight.

—Proverbs 3:5-6

*

Click image to enlarge.

trust

A House is Built

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

The web made by the orchard orbweaver spider was nearly perfect when I noticed it.

Row after row of mathematically perfect sections.

A geometry lesson waiting to happen.

A lesson for people, that is.

The spider is not in need of further instruction.

Without any problem at all, he can whip out a marvel of beauty, working steadily and efficiently with intense focus and determination.

Who taught the spider to do this?

God placed the wisdom and intellect needed to create such a masterpiece in the spider’s mind.

People don’t make webs like spiders, but we do many other things.

Consider this scripture:

By wisdom a house is built,
    and by understanding it is established;

—Proverbs 24:3

God gives us the ability to learn.

With our learning, we may construct a physical house.

By gaining understanding, a “household”  or family can be defined by loving care and nurturing.

Who gives us understanding?

How can we know how to build and establish our households?

God gives skill and understanding concerning webs to a spider.

He is certainly willing to give wisdom to His people.

Asking for guidance and instruction from God is always the right choice.

Always.

*
*
*
*

Click to enlarge image.

wisdom