Light and Shadows


It is the time of day when the sun plays
its game of light and shadows.

Wind is only visible high on the palms.
I remain unseen as a few dog walkers
stroll past as I take an early dinner

and linger over hot tea. Reading about
Bonhoeffer is more profound than
anything I can see from my window or

read in the news. What he missed in the
Barcelona of 1928, I miss here and now,
but I have to let that go.

For it was in 1924 on Palm Sunday as he
sat in church in Rome that a question
formed in the back of his mind.

If he only knew that I have asked the
very same question for at least a decade
on my journey that remains unclear.

“What is the Church?”

Bonhoeffer’s voice still speaks. Oh that
he could have been my dinner companion
then as now!

It is the time of day when the sun plays
its game of light and shadows.

 

But Not Hope


It didn’t bother me that after my return
to hiking I was being passed by men,
women, children, beasts, and insects.

I hadn’t hiked this mountain trail since
summer last year. After I returned there
a few days in a row, it was clear my brain

got ahead of my body. I should have
listened to my body. I’m not really
disappointed. I’m exhausted. Over did it.

Things change.

Age has a way of doing that. Some changes
are harder than others but change we will.
How we respond to or handle the changes

are the real tests! Chronic illness has my
attention which is truly annoying and
has contributed to a great amount of loss.

What happens when you pray for healing
and healing doesn’t come? When you believe
God heals and it still doesn’t come?

Things change. Some things don’t change.

This doesn’t change who God is, what he
has done, the things he can do, or has
promised to do.

God doesn’t change.

To try to stay in faith when my body is
screaming, “Don’t believe, God isn’t true” is
my measured response to these things that

I can’t change but must accept and deal with
the best I can each day. I settled for an easier
walk around my neighborhood yesterday.

Things change.

Today much too much pain to walk either.
I would have preferred to write a romantic
haiku and not address the challenges of pain

and faith at all. What kind of writer would I
be if I only shared my heart on the good days?
You deserve the truth in any case.

Reality has no substitutes.

It is when we are at our worst that faith gives
us the best. God’s grace and blessings still
abound. Maybe not in ways I prayed for.

Things change. But not truth. But not hope.

Not in Science


I didn’t show any interest until about an
hour or so before the event. My interest
increased when I walked outside.

The morning air was still. No birds. Not a
leaf on a tree shook. There was hushed
expectation from all of God’s creation.

Except for humans.

The experts explained the coming solar
eclipse as “cosmic coincidence.” Humanity
blew it off as simply happenstance.

What arrogance and irreverence! How odd
that the trees, birds, and animals knew
what humanity forgot. That the eclipse

echoes this truth, “Be still and know that I
am God. I will be exalted among the nations!
I will be exalted in the earth.” (Psalm 46:10)

As I stood outside with my homemade
projector box in hand waiting to take my
first look skyward, the stillness was eerie.

Unworldly, really. Made me think. What a
great day for Jesus to come (again)! Or, said
another way in Klingon, “What a great day to

die!” Think about it. Almost the whole world
was looking up at the Sun and Moon from
roughly 09:00 to 12:00 (Arizona time).

2017-08-21 09:41 eclipse box photo

As I snapped my first box photo, that line
from Nacho Libre was in my head, “I believe
in science.” Is that mankind’s mantra or a

death knell? For the birds if you ask me. The
birds were awed by the truth; people were
awed by the lie. I don’t believe in science.

The awe-inspiring eclipse and eerie stillness
that preceded it reinforced the hope that is
still to come: “For the Lord Himself will come

down from heaven with a shout of command,
with the voice of the archangel and with the
[blast of the] trumpet of God, and the dead in

Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and
remain [on the earth] will simultaneously be
caught up (raptured) together with them [the
resurrected ones] in the clouds to meet the

Lord in the air, and so we will always be with
the Lord! Therefore comfort and encourage
one another with these words [concerning

our reunion with believers who have died].”
(1 Thessalonians 4:16-18 AMP) So, that is
my take on the total solar eclipse for 2017.

I doubt that many will be here for the next
one in 2024; not because we died; but
because we believed in the hope to come

and not in science.

Odds and Ends No. 48


The temperature hit 112° F as I got out
of the car to walk Thunderbird. A few
spaces down, a young man was standing

near his car. He looked like he was in
email or texting mode. He was dressed
in running shorts only. “Adonis lives,”

was my first thought. Stark white.
Perfectly muscular. As I opened the
trunk to get my walking stick, he took

off running up the trail to the first ridge
line. He looked like a Greek statue; not
one body hair! To say that he and I were

opposites is an understatement. Here I
am dressed in black top and shorts, my
belt with stuff hanging all over it, two

water bottles, and a walking stick. He,
on the other hand, ran off with nothing.
Just his phone and shorts; no water!

As I crested the first ridge, no sign of
him. I was only a minute or two behind
him or so I thought. I got to the top of

next ridge which gave me a wider view.
I started to pan the trails visible from
this vantage point. No sign of him.

Fifty-five minutes later I was back in
the parking lot. His car was gone. Wow!
In my car cooling down, I toweled my
head, neck, and arms. Then, on the

drive back home, I started to chuckle.
How did he do that? You and I both
know that Adonis lives in Greek

mythology; not in that parking lot!
I have enough hair on my body for at
least three people! A big knot above

my left knee. My skin is more olive
than white. (Maybe that is why the
Army listed me as “Other.”) Well, it

is a good thing that the Lord loves
me like I am. Adonis, I’m not. I had
a power bar soon after I got home.

I was depleted, needed protein. She
just left for a meeting but I’m now
thinking dinner. I have one frozen

hamburger left. Sounds good. Not
very hungry. Good day. I baked in
the sun and basked in my Father’s

love for me as I am; hair, knots,
and all. Correction: Great day.
Hamburger, sliced pickles, ketchup.

Cheese? Annoying phone alarm.
It is garbage night. Trash out first,
then dinner. And iced tea. Most

might say I saw an ordinary guy;
another my guardian angel. I’ve
never been one to agree with “most.”