God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Isolation

This photo was taken in the Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge (Virginia Beach) last month. The egret (just left of center) had attracted my attention. I wonder, do birds experience isolation? If so, is it something they seek or something they avoid?

For people, isolation can be helpful or harmful. Or both at the same time. So many people are experiencing isolation right now due to the pandemic. Some are comforted by the experience but many are discomforted. I pray for God’s peace for everyone experiencing isolation.

Standard
God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Ordinary

When I saw this Prickly Pear Cactus, I was struck by how “unusual “ it looked to my eye. Ironically, it didn’t even really catch my eye until almost the end of our week in Virginia Beach. Ironic because it was literally right beside the driveway where we were parking the car.

How often do we miss something that is “right under our nose?” That is a great way to think about seeing God in the ordinary. Seeing what is really right in front of us.

Standard
God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Hope

It’s not every day you see a rainbow. I can’t ever remember seeing one in the morning and evening on the same day. This was the one we saw in the evening a couple of days ago while at Virginia Back.

Rainbows are associated with pots of gold. This is an ancient fable and it seems possible that it was made up in part to represent the foolishness of chasing wealth. Foolish because there is no real end of a rainbow just as there is no end to chasing wealth.

I associate rainbows with hope. Probably because of God’s promise to Noah in Genesis. Just as foolish to some, I suppose.

Standard
God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Seasons

This is a photo from Glacier National Park from September 3 years ago. I enjoy seeing photos from the park on their Facebook page. Sometimes, it brings back fond memories. Other times, I’m struck by how different the park looks at different times of the year. In different seasons.

I’ve only recently come to recognize our lives as having seasons. With children who are now adults and grand children who are growing up quickly, the cycle of renewal has become much more obvious to me. How fitting that we have been described s as God’s vineyard.

Standard
God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Hidden

I find water lilies to be intriguing. I’m not sure why but I used to think they were completely floating in the water. I learned from Wikipedia that is not the case. It seems obvious that they must be anchored to the bottom of the pond or lake, since they more or less stay in one place. I also learned there were about 70 species of water lilies. Genetic studies have shown that they are among the oldest flowering plants.

There are so many things in life that are “obvious” once you know them. There also are so many things that are “hidden” that we make assumptions about. Often without realizing we are making those assumptions. This seems to apply to racism. It is not obvious until you see it. Then you wonder how you could have not seen it before.

(Photo: Indiana Dunes National Park)

Standard
God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

History

This photo was taken flying over Provo, Utah. The snow capped mountains create a stunning visual. What strikes me most though is the river traversing through the mountain ridge. How does that happen? Geologists probably have a good theory. Whatever the explanation, I’m sure you have to go way back in history for it to make sense.

Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy history much when I was in school. I certainly enjoy it much more now. In large part, that is because I want to understand why things are the way they are now and I recognize that you need to go way back in history for an understanding. I’ve learned a lot over the past 3 weeks. History that isn’t taught in schools. Experiences that others have had that I have not.

I pray that each of us will have the humility to listen and learn.

Standard
God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Obstructed View

This is a photo near Berea, Kentucky. It was taken while looking out through an opening in the trees. The trees were not quite dense enough to create a “tunnel” view, but they definitely made it difficult see everything along the hike. In other settings, we might talk about an “obstructed” view. Or even “blinds spots.”

Recent discussions have shown me how many of us have blind spots regarding racism in our society. The reflection from Jesuitprayer.org this morning reminded me that as followers of Jesus, there is no “neutral,” in the face of injustice. There’s only racist or anti-racist. Taking action requires moving (being open) to a different point of view to see beyond our “obstructions”.

Standard