Archive | April, 2022

Beautiful Earth

30 Apr
For the beauty of the earth,
for the glory of the skies,
for the love which from our birth
over and around us lies,
Lord of all, to Thee we raise,
this, our hymn of grateful praise.

Folliott Sandford Pierpoint (1864)


The Anchor Holds

28 Apr

Sound the bell slowly
there is no urgency
hurry and rush do not exist.

drink the cup deliberately
savor the richness that rises
from depths and intensity.

Life’s fabric is worn thin
once vibrant colors blend
run together into muted puddles.

the ship is buffeted by
inevitable winds, expected
but uninvited. Almost friends.

And through it all the anchor holds
steady and sure. It holds. A toast
to last things and first things.
Drain the glass.

Thank You

25 Apr

When the sunlight is just right,
when the haze has wrapped the
mountains in a soft gray cloth,
when the pale green palo verdes
put on their yellow dresses,
when the wind sits still and
doesn’t rearrange the scenery,
and when I turn a corner and
see this…I have to stop on the
side of the road and just be in
the moment of mysterious beauty.

Have you noticed, too? I’ll bet you
said “Thank You”, didn’t you? The
inherent response to sacred reality.

Thank you.

Follow The Path

22 Apr

It’s always good to catch your breath when you walk or hike a trail. Or, ride a bike along the wonderful Tucson bike pathway system. Pausing is even better when you can find a beautiful resting spot like the one provided by this friendly Palo Verde tree. But the pathway beckons. Discovery happens when you follow The Path, not when you lounge in the shade. The pathway I follow, the way of Jesus in his life and teachings, is not always as straight and smooth as this one, but it contains great things yet to discover, and plenty of opportunities to experience creation’s creative power. So, rest when you need to…but stay on the path. It’s the adventure of a lifetime. Lifetime and more. Blessings to you as the sun rises on this quiet Friday morning.

In Profile

21 Apr

I wonder how many flower photographs I’ve taken over the years. As I look at a folder about to burst from so many beautiful flowers, it dawns on me that I am a full-face photographer. Smile! Look at the camera! Click, and the lovely flower is captured, straight on. But I think I will add to those “open wide, say aaaaaah” shots some profiles because that perspective tells a different story. There is beauty still, but of a different sort…the colors vary, the support system is revealed, branches and leaves make the flower even more attractive. I just need to remind myself to change perspective once in a while, look at things from a different direction.

Works with people, too. The old saying: “Never judge a book by its cover” makes sense here. If all you want is a colorful book for display or decoration, then the cover alone will do. But it’s the story between the covers that counts. People are so multi-dimensional, so diverse in life experience, beliefs, personal opinions and attitudes and to miss those characteristics is to miss the real person. A word of advice and a word of caution: be a good listener; don’t do all the talking. Affirm and appreciate differences; be open to diversity. Be grateful for your friend’s willingness to share; hold it all gently. Caution: the risk in changing perspective is that the new perspective might change you. I think truth or insight are revealed when I dare to open my certainty to possibility. I think, too, that’s the way the Spirit works. That’s one of the important things I hear from the Risen One, that’s what he taught in his life. Look at the world from a different direction, try the new, don’t just shoot pictures of flowers from one direction because a different beauty is in the profile.

Just something to think about as the sun comes up on a Thursday morning. Thanks be to Christ who leads us to the fullness of life.

Light Lives

18 Apr

If there were no clouds, would the golden light be as bright?

Without the mountain, would the morning rays scatter across the sky?

The straight-line horizon serves as a very fine entry point for the early sun,
but nothing projects the beauty like those mountains. Cast in soft gray as the first fingers of light wave to the waiting world, the mountain plays the minor role, at least for the moment. Ah, but wait.

The sunset will come. And then the starring role belongs to the rugged canyons, the sharp peaks, the majestic stature of the Catalinas. Best of all, the play never stops. It is a treat to the eye everyday. Light shining through the somber gray of early morning. Light shouting to the world in the late afternoon. Light in the world…Light of the world. Light living beyond all restraints. Light filling the spaces and the spirits. Light lives and moves among us. Thanks be to God!

Has escuchado (Have You Heard?)

17 Apr

il est ressuscite

el he resucitado


es ist auferstaden

vstal z mrtvych

a risorto

He is risen!



Waiting For The Light

16 Apr

I try to imagine what it must have been like for that handful of humanity in the first century who saw their teacher and friend arrested, tried and executed within a matter of hours. But I can’t.

I try to imagine what it must feel like to live under a brutal dictatorship like the one that existed in Germany in the late 1930s. But I can’t. Or to try to survive in a war-ravaged country like Ukraine as invading forces rip at the heart of the nation. It’s not possible.

When the sun rises on Sunday morning, we will sing and rejoice. And we must, but we dare not forget that suffering still exists around the world and down the street, that our celebration is also a call to sacred solidarity with the least and the left-behind. The Good News is not about possessing the combination to heaven’s gate, it’s about food enough and drying tears and standing with. Easter is not about what I possess, it is about what I profess…and about the principles that inform how I live day after day.

Easter re-defines the word neighbor. But that’s not a new idea, is it. “Who is my neighbor?” the curious man asked. Who, indeed. Ask the One who is greater than time or tombs. You’ll know him by his hands and his side. Watch and wait. He’ll find you. And when he does, he will lead you to the threshold of life. Crossing that threshold…well, that takes some Easter courage. But, take heart. You won’t be alone.

Waking Into Life

15 Apr

Now I rise from blessed sleep.
I pray the Lord my soul to keep.
If I should wake before I die,
give me strength to work and try
to share your love with no restraint,
to know your joy, to laugh and paint
the cloudless sky with brilliant gold;
O Lord, this day may my wings unfold
and lift me closer yet to you.
Then, when this lovely day is through,
may I find my rest once more in sleep,
trusting that you watch and keep
my soul in the palm of your hand.


Clear To Land

14 Apr
Gear down.
Flaps 20 degrees.
Runway in sight.
Clear to land.
Watch life and be amazed.
In fact, watch life and be humbled.
I wonder why human beings think we’re so special?