Archive | June, 2014
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Angel Oak

27 Jun

Angel Oak

One thousand years before Christopher Columbus stumbled into the New World, this tree, The Angel Oak, welcomed the morning sun on what is now Johns Island in South Carolina.
This masterpiece of creation reaches 65 feet into the sky, boasts a trunk circumference of 25.5 feet, provides 17,000 square feet of shade, and stretches its longest arm 89 feet across the South Carolina landscape.

Imagine what Angel Oak has seen…and experienced. Imagine the stories this ancient one could tell. Words like strength and beauty and power, and even grace, seem appropriate.

Angel Oak is a living metaphor that offers plenty of shade for wondering. Take the time.

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The Embrace

25 Jun

The Embrace

The look on her face puzzles me.

Is it contentment? Is it concern? Is she happy or worried?

I think she’s just read the headlines about hundreds of children lodged in an old warehouse in Nogales, Arizona. Refugee children running from terror into a turmoil that they cannot imagine. And now she is embracing her child so tenderly, so powerfully that he or she disappears into the mother. From the womb to life…now from terror to tenderness. If only she could take the child back into herself, save him from the horrors of Sudan or Central America, save her from child slavery and scarring abuse. If only.

What do you think she’s thinking?
What are we doing to the innocents?
Why?

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June 11, 2014

12 Jun

June 11, 2014

Really? Nothing at all?

Significant days are not just or only notorious days, or celebrity days, or monumental days of great memory. Last week, while on vacation, I met an honest-to-goodness celebrity, watched as people clamored to get near her and fans focused cameras to catch the moment. Another day I ate the largest sea scallops I’d ever seen…the size of small bread plates…succulent, delicious.
That was followed by visiting what must be the largest oak tree in America (The Angel Tree) and marveling at this 500 year old masterpiece of creation. Those were significant days…I have the photos to paste in my scrapbook. Significant.

But what of the days in-between? What about the down days when nothing seems all that important? The days when the spectacular doesn’t show up?

I sat with the woman I’ve loved for 53 years on a towel on the beach and we watched the bubbling surf through our toes as we laid back together. We didn’t talk. We just looked. ¬†She took my hand, we closed our eyes and felt the warm earth beneath us. It wasn’t a celebrity moment, it won’t be recorded in history books, but it was significant.

I would put a plaque on that spot if the sand would cooperate. It would say: “On this site on June 11, 2014 something significant happened.”

Something significant…maybe even sacred.

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Coming And Going

9 Jun

Coming And Going

It’s only a matter of time. The waves will eventually capture the castle and it will return to its original elements. The sand from which it is made came from the ocean floor, was carried to the beach by currents and rolling waves, and it will return to its origins the same way. Its beginning and its end are the same. In between its arrival and its departure, the sand was shaped into something remarkable and quite beautiful…an original creation that had never existed before and which will never exist again in its unique, present form. The ocean which sent it to the beach will welcome the sand home, receiving it into the place it knows best.

The wonder of life is to recognize that beginning and ending are the same, and, in between, there is remarkable beauty.