I Noticed

I saw it coming out of the wind and rain. A sign. An opening in the clouds appeared.

A ray. Slim, tentative, gathering other rays. to speak through the opening. Speak to me?

Just a word for the dark, rainy, windy, angry day. Just a word for the good, bad, sometimes great, beautiful, gloomy, nearing the end game of life.

Just a word gathering past the finale coming from the sun. Just a word coming from the Son. God cares. He really does you know. When you notice, you can feel it inside. It’s bone deep and heart felt.

HOPE

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Picture taken as the storm seemed to be abating this afternoon by GaryFultz

Big storm, small Rays, big sun (Son)

Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. Romans 5:5

But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.  We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair;  persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed 2Corinthians 4:7-9

 Sometimes we need the storm to notice the Son. May your clouds part, if only for a small a ray of hope. Remember where those rays come from!

Signiture

The Call

A simple sunset. Predictable. On time. I digress. But, when I stepped outside the house this evening, there was an unmistakable  Call to Worship

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Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness. Psalm 29:2

Gary

From The Woods

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I’ve been in the woods and quite absent from the internet. I’m noticeably different (self diagnosis). Seemingly random thoughts tug on my mind while winters crystals defy the sun. The winter sun’s angle allows the snow to direct any radiant heat back into outer space. The sun has gone south for the winter. It’s below freezing.

I wonder about the winter seasons in my life, when the Son seems ineffective in my life. My life’s edges are frosty and cold to those around me. I am indifferent. Maybe I should get closer to the Son??

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A beautiful little pond, frozen in the woods. I’m sorry for all the brush in the way, it just grows up and multiplies. Before you know it the brush gets mighty thick, thorny and impassable in ones soul. Life is like that you know. Sometimes our beauty is hidden or terribly neglected. Cute little sprouts take over one’s life. Sometimes our prayer should be “Lord please brush out my life, I place it in your care”. It may hurt.

leaf and buds emlSomehow, when we think we are just a branch with one ole dried up leaf hanging on in the cold, God brings forth buds. They are there. It may be dormant in the cold but packed with nutrition for lives looking for browse. I’ve watched deer and grouse eat these like candy.  Like the pain of thawing out one’s frozen fingers, Thawing a heart is really tough. I know.

So I let go of the last dried up frozen leaf. Let my trophies go. It hurts.

  I Let the new creation bud. I Let those who may browse. I Let go and face the Son.

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I Face the Sun and the woods glows in it’s light. Every frozen crystal reflects it’s Glory.

I encourage you to let the Son come into your life and take complete control. Even in your seasons of coldest winter you can glow in His radiance. I know. I’m quite different (God’s diagnosis).

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17)

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I shall meet again with my God in the morning as I do every morning. Winter in one’s soul is just a season. Sometimes in life’s coldest moments God lays his hand on our heart. I know.

Gary

 

When The Dust Settles

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My thoughts as we put the urn of Dad’s ashes into the ground a few days ago…

There is nothing worse, absolutely nothing worse than waking up in eternity and finding out you were wrong.

John 14:6 : Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

John 10:9 I am the gate. If anyone enters through Me, he will be saved. He will come in and go out and find pasture.

John 11:25: Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me will live, even though he dies.

I don’t know about you but I’m putting all my marbles on the one, the only one who didn’t stay dead.

Please don’t die forever!    

Gary

Wandering Into Highlight

Notice, be alert and unravel little mysteries. When the sun goes down look for the reds, yellows, purples and other miscellaneous colors wafted on the clouds. Look for the highlights.  When a small child yells out a command on a solemn occasion. What’s with that? When all 7 teenage boys commit their life to follow Jesus because their Sunday school teacher asks them if they would, find out the whole story. Some stories may be told for a life time. Some a short meaningful wisp. No matter what, the sun always sets.

fire Haze sunset
Wild fires hazed the sky, colored and magnified the setting sun view from our front lawn.

16 year old Alexa was getting baptized a couple weeks ago along with 20+ others as a public announcement to follow Jesus. A solemn occasion. A six year old boy yelled out “Alexa, tell me a joke!”  A very funny moment for those who knew little johnny (we will call him) lives in a smart house (can virtual Alexa tell a joke??)

Times are a changing are they not?

 

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A hot summer evening watching colors and rays appear, change and disappear.

I had coffee and an amazing conversation with a friend Sunday afternoon. Somewhere between fishing, family and church stories he mentioned that all seven of his teen boys  in Sunday school class had prayed with him to follow Jesus. I pushed him a little to know how that happened. After his normal disclaimer (it was all God and not me) the story of seven boys studying the scriptures about the basics for the past year. Things like redemption, sanctification and their biblical threads on through the ministry and purpose of Jesus death and resurrection. These boys were ready to pray. What a highlight!

 

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Another Sunset from our yard. Every night is different, every sunset unique

Just a thought:  Life’s truths are like puzzle pieces still in the box. Sometimes I am the six year old just reacting and unaware of what’s going on. Other times I am like my friend helping those around me (maybe too selectively) put some puzzle pieces together and introduce them to Jesus.

   My hope is that on my final sunset, there will be some highlights, even in my wanderings, but highlights non the less.

 Gary

 

 

 

Nature: Gods Living Room

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I grew up hunting and fishing the wilderness places where a very small percentage of people venture. Nature in the raw is truely ruggedly beautiful. One can sit on a rock and drink in the exquisite interlocking co-existing life forms  Let me snicker a bit here because I would wager there are a million mosquitoes in this picture waiting for some poor soul to try their hand at communing with the almighty. I know about that as well.House rock eml

Nature truely could be called the living room of God but one will not experience the almighty by simply going there. I sense many think so because God’s handiwork is so awesome and overwhelming that how could we not experience God by experiencing  nature?

I must admit, there are a lot of clues in the wild. One can experience peace in the gurgling brook and the morning sunrise. One’s smallness is real also in the mysterious aura felt around the evening fire as the wolves moan, the frogs croak and a large animal walks in the water. Look at the zillion stars out there from ones tent site; that’s a big clue.

Another Clue: Natures sense of peace is between the storms. God’s peace is in the midst of the storm. 

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This forest fire died here. It was a big one.

Visit the wilderness enough and one will experience all that happens in nature. A beautiful sunrise in the east may lure you into the middle of a big lake while the western skies may prepare the storm of the century (I was there). That’s a link worth clicking on. I have a hundred stories where “mother” nature does not care about us. But, God cares.

 Nature is not tame and from all indications neither is God. Evening in the BWCA email

If you want to meet God in nature, just ask. Not to dissappoint anyone but God will meet us anywhere. He is God and calls the shots. Consider what He has promised in scripture.

“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6

“And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” Romans 10:13

There’s so much more if you care to look it up!

I love getting into nature. I still see it as God’s living room (my thing I guess) and I meet him there but only because I have a relationship with my creator. It’s my most important relationship. We talk and I listen as well. There is much to hear and I pray to see and hear and understand. Peace comes from God and not nature, but what a great back drop for allowing God to work on this scruffy specimen of a follower of Jesus. What a great place to fellowship and dine, in God’s living room.

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Gary

When We See. Really See

 

Let me ramble a bit about some wilderness wanderings with my family last week. The sites and sounds were awesome! So much of our trip is a parallel to a life with God, pictures and all. Let’s talk about what we see. really see.

Most of us have our wilderness wanderings of the soul as well. One is in the seeing beyond ourselves.

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3 otter swam by in the wee hours of daylight. It seems they were created to fish and play

Let’s face it. Most of our seeing is positioning ourselves to see. Awareness is another ingredient to seeing. Capturing a photo is another step in seeing. Framing that photo is then important to explain what we saw. Maybe, God shows off sometimes. Just for us?? He loves us you know. Maybe we see (really see) that and know that He is God, Creator of all things. He has framed our world, all the molecules in the universe and beyond. He has framed you.

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The rain stopped, the sun came out and set as night came. See the wolf? The sun prevails.
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Our Grand daughters senior dream vacation (A wilderness canoe trip). She will outfish most.  

It’s entirely possible to have a dream vacation and only have an adventure, see a nice sunset, catch some fish, do some exploring and that’s about it if it works out.

There’s a better way. What if we position ourselves to see God’s handiwork in marvelous ways? What if we don’t? What if we spend some alone time with God expressing our wonder at the sights and sounds?

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Early one morning I waited until I could see through the fog. kind of.

What do you see? Is life just rambling in the fog between storms? Are you positioned to see God’s handiwork all around? How about in your life? God is in the business of opening our eyes you know. I only know about this because He has done it in my life and coutless others throughout time. Like the man born blind and healed by Jesus in the Bible, he knows. He sees John 9:25
He answered, “Whether He is a sinner I do not know. There is one thing I do know: I was blind, but now I see!”

I strongly reccomend some wilderness wanderings. Find someplace to have a long chat with your creator. Check out going to the BWCAW sometime. Watch out for bear! (really).

Gary

 

And We, Like the Bee. Maybe

Sun Set on Soybeans emllessons from a Battered Bumble Bee

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The sun was setting, it was close to dark. I was walking to the house after taking sunset pictures that were odd colored when I noticed a bumble bee on a fall flower. I took a full one second time exposure to capture the light and the bee. An OK picture I thought, but I could not see everything. Sometimes we just do not see the whole picture unless we stop and see. Really see.

Battered Bumble Bee

For the bee this is as good as it gets.  

A bee, clinging to a flower when it should have been in the hive. Old, torn wings, badly wounded leg and foot and feeding late into the evening. A bee on it’s last feeding perhaps? We all end up in tough shape if we live a long life.

This is how good it can get…

Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty (John 6:35)
 But whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” (John 4:14)
 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment. (Revelation 21:16)
The promise that came to me as I walked into the house: “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest”. (Matthew 11:28)

Gary

A Sunset Reminder

I want to share last evenings sunset from our front door to you. I put the light meter on the sun so the camera would soak up the color as we see it live. Slow the speed for saturation, No filters, cropping or color enhancement. As is.

Below is a progression. 10 shots of the same sun over a period of seven minutes. all moving parts of color, lighting, framing, clouds and the sun dropping to the horizon.

See the slide show by clicking on a picture and follow the arrows. What do you see and feel in a sunset? Are you ready for each days sunset? Sometimes I am.

My Prayer: “lord God , I am in awe of your beauty. I want all things to be right between you and I, my family and fellow man. I don’t know when I will behold my last sunset. I am eternally grateful for your greatest Sonrise!”

Gary