God in all things, Scenery

The Small and the Mighty

This photo was taken at the Virgin Islands National Park early this year. What draws your attention? For me, it’s the short cactus right beside the path. It is known as the Turks Head Cactus, due to the resemblance to a Turkish Fez. As an aside, Turks and Caicos is named after this plant or a similar looking plant.

For me, this image is a reminder that God uses the small the humble the mighty.

God in all things, Scenery

The Deep

This photo was taken a year ago in Jamaica. I’ve seen sun rays coming through the clouds many times before, but never such a focused beam in the distance.

The ocean can seem overwhelming in its vastness. Full of mystery. A reminder of how small and fragile we are. Yet some see only challenges to be overcome.

You call me out upon the waters

The great unknown where feet may fail

And there I find You in the mystery

In oceans deep

My faith will stand

And I will call upon Your name

For I am Yours and You are mine

(Hillsong United, Oceans)

God in all things, Scenery

Unseen Damage

This is the view overlooking Coral Bay, Saint John VI. It looks amazing from this spot. But when you drive down to the town, you can still see significant damage from Hurricane Irma one and a half years later. Damage to buildings, abandoned cars, dead trees.

How comforting that God not only sees the big picture, God is with us in each moment and knows whatever we may be suffering.


The Wind

This photo was taken on our last morning in Jamaica. This spot is one of my favorites at Galina Breeze, especially to watch the sunrise. We had a couple of days with beautiful sunrises, then 3 or 4 in a row that were very cloudy (ie, you couldn’t even see the sun rise). On our last day, I remember looking out our window and commenting to my wife that it should be a good sunrise because there were no clouds overhead. When we got down to the “beach”, there was this dense haze on the horizon. I can’t remember ever seeing so much haze there before.

After we got home, I began wondering if the haziness had anything to do with the winds. Every morning, it had been unusually windy. So much, that it was actually comfortable (whereas I usually sweat through breakfast). A quick internet search found that the source of the haze was …(dramatic pause)… dust from Africa. Blowing across the Atlantic sea into the Caribbean.

I certainly didn’t need a reminder of the power of the wind, but it was a nice reminder of the positive effects of the wind. God’s spirit is described as wind many times in the Bible. I like to think of the Holy Spirit as a cooling breeze. Refreshing.


Impending Storms

We were in a relatively small boat down in the Virgin Islands when we saw this storm in the distance. It reached us a few minutes later, but fortunately, we didn’t get too wet.

I must confess, I have mixed feelings about rain and storms. I know that we need rain. Thousands of people die each year around the world due to drought. On the other hand, we’ve recently seen the effects of too much rain with flooding and crops being ruined. There are many things in my life with obvious issues involving too much, too little. Like work. Too busy and I feel overwhelmed. Not busy enough and I get bored. Or people. When I have no one to interact with, I feel lonely. In a large gathering, I sometimes feel the need to find a quiet space.

We often hear about moderation but the word I prefer to focus on is balance. Finding the “middle ground.” While there are plenty of things we can’t control (like the rain), there are plenty of other areas where God leads us to find the balance between enough and too much.