"Behind every dark cloud there's a silver lining." The idea behind this famous phrase may have originated with seventeenth century writer John Milton. The optimistic Victorians popularized it in the nineteenth century. If we were doing a small group together, I might ask you, "What are some things in your life that obscure your vision … Continue reading Glimpse of a Silver Lining
As the sun was just coming up through the trees, I walked around the yard this morning. I'm sure most of you gardeners do the same thing. Every day there's something new to see, if you look closely enough. My little camellia shrub is blooming profusely now, but mainly around the middle. I planted it … Continue reading Six on Saturday: Walk Around the Yard 2.15.2020
Ebenezer Scrooge is famous for responding to others' greeting of “Merry Christmas,” with his trademark, “Bah! Humbug!” Many people feel this way about Valentine’s Day. I get it, with our cultural commercialization and high-pressure focus on an idealized romantic love. But, far be it from me to throw cold water on this holiday. After all, … Continue reading Valentine's Day: What Love Is This?
It may still be winter, but February is not without interesting color on the US Gulf Coast. Last week, I was breathlessly anticipating the opening of the first bud on my back camellia. It finally happened on Thursday. I think the name is Crimson King or something like that. These big blossoms are truly royal. … Continue reading Six on Saturday: Early February Flowers
Infectious diseases can be scary, especially one that’s new and has no vaccination. When illnesses are introduced into a population that hasn’t built up an immunity, it can spread rapidly, becoming an epidemic. You never know if you’re standing next to a carrier in a public place. Early Christianity spread like an epidemic. When Paul’s … Continue reading Are You a Carrier?
Tomorrow is Groundhog Day, February 2nd, where, according to tradition and superstition, if a groundhog comes out of his hole and sees his shadow, there will be six more weeks of winter. Never mind that spring is already on the calendar on March 20th. Groundhog or not, I'm already anticipating spring. Our last frost occurs, … Continue reading Six on Saturday: Anticipation
Thank the Lord that we live in an age when we can still hear firsthand memories from the people who suffered through the horrors of Hitler’s regime. Thank God for technology that has been preserving those memories for generations to come. It was real. It happened. Human beings committed atrocities on other humans beyond our … Continue reading Our Dark Human Heart
Throughout the winter months, we depend on many varieties of camellias to provide color and interest to Gulf Coast gardens. In fact, it is Alabama's state flower. The first five pictures I'm showing today are not from my garden. Only the last collage is the camellia from my frontyard. These three beauties you see above … Continue reading Six On Saturday: Just Camellias
I’m still stuck in the weeds today - not literally. I’m thinking figuratively and spiritually. I love a good metaphor. Last Saturday’s blog post took you to my weedy backyard, where I had the guts to show you the messy places where I have let the weeds take over. I confessed I don’t tend to … Continue reading Back in the Weeds
I have a high tolerance for weeds. That’s not a good thing. Any diligent gardener knows it’s a never-ending war. You must stay on top of the battles, or the weeds will take over your territory. Never mind the excuses. Wild things don’t care. If you aren’t there to eradicate them, they continue to grow … Continue reading Six Pix on Saturday: The Lazy Gardener's Approach to Weeds
Our church had its typical old grouch. The man served in various leadership positions and could be counted on to bring his bucket of cold water to douse any spark of creativity or youthful enthusiasm. Proverbs 29:22 A man of wrath stirs up strife, and one given to anger causes much transgression. You know the … Continue reading Is Everybody Angry These Days?
Today I'm completing my favorite pictures from 2019, since I couldn't confine my favorites to just six last week. Even choosing twelve is hard. However, a new year is ahead of us wih great possibilities. This is a view of the southeast corner of the yard in July. It's filled with flowering shrubs, but the … Continue reading Six on Saturday: More Review of 2019
HINDSIGHT IS 2020 When I was younger, I thought by the time a person is in their late 60s, they would have their life together. Spoiler alert to you young ones reading this: you don’t. Yes, it’s better – much better than the crazy, heady, confused younger years. Many of the questions are settled. There’s … Continue reading A New Calendar Year
How can I choose just six? Reviewing my photo file was a good experience to evaluate last year's garden efforts and set a few goals for 2020. But there were so many things I loved. I'll start with this pink Knockout Rose. It's a dependable bloomer during most of the year in our climate. You … Continue reading Six Pix on Saturday: 2019 Garden Favorites
As 2019 comes to a close, I'm thinking about cycles. Not the kind you ride, although I could make a case for them fitting into this theme. Cycles are phases that come full circle. They are revolving eras or a succession of expected markers in time. They are patterns. Cycles may be repeating events. They … Continue reading Turn Turn Turn
Let's stay inside on this rainy Saturday. I'll show you some of my favorite books about gardening, that have been helpful to me through the years. At the top of my list are several publications by Oxmoor House, who produces Southern Living magazine. My mother subscribed to that monthly periodical from Issue 1, Volume 1 … Continue reading Six on Saturday: Gardening Resources
My husband’s church used to produce huge Christmas extravaganzas, using hundreds of people for music, drama, sets, production, and technology. He and several members of the extended Rogers family participated in various ways. I never missed them. But there was one aspect that made me cringe a bit. While most of the focus was the … Continue reading Christmas: The Beginning of the End
I mentioned last Saturday that I just play at gardening. It's a hobby more than a necessity, and I said we'd starve if we had to live on what I grow. There's no plowed rectangle with neatly lined rows. But you will find some herbs tucked among the flowers or flowers tucked among the vegetables. … Continue reading Six on Saturday: Winter Veggies
In an age of rising fascination with the supernatural, the sweet little Christmas narrative is an in-your-face supernatural saga of epic proportions. While there are dark elements that lurk in the shadows of the nativity story, it is ultimately one of light, life, and hope. No blog post can do justice to this topic, even … Continue reading The Improbable Incarnation
Today, December 14, 2019, my home state of Alabama is celebrating its 200th Anniversary. There have been special events all year, but today is the grand finale in downtown Montgomery. I'm not there, but I'm paying tribute in this post. We have to acknowledge the sins of our history where slavery was integral to the … Continue reading Six Pix on Saturday – or Seven
My Twitter profile begins with “Follower of Yeshua.” Some people may wonder why I use that name, rather than the more commonly used Jesus. After all, the angel Gabriel appeared to Mary and said to her: “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus.” … Continue reading What's In A Name?
Pardon me, while I make some adjustments to my blog schedule. I'm going to shift my Monday blog to Tuesday and do a less wordy Saturday blog. As always, I reserve the right to change my mind. 🙂 As you'll see today, there are six pictures with some captions or brief explainations. There's lots to … Continue reading Saturday Six Pix
Yes, it’s the holiday season, but not yet New Year’s Day - as in January 1. It’s the beginning of the Advent season. On the church Christian calendar, Advent begins the new cycle of liturgical seasons that celebrate the full redemption story of Jesus. Sunday, December 1, was the first Sunday of Advent for this … Continue reading It's December, so Happy New Year!
I won't keep you long. There are parades to watch, games to play, turkeys to prepare, pies to bake, and naps to take. We have so, so much for which to be thankful. "God is great. God is good. Let us thank Him for our food. By His hands we all are fed. Give us, … Continue reading Happy Thanksgiving
This time of year, there are many opportunities for adults to listen in on children being asked, “What are you thankful for?” You can count on some standard answers: my parents, my toys, my food, my television, my dog, or school is out this week. Yesterday in church, I heard an answer that made me … Continue reading Give Thanks in All Circumstances?
Today’s post has few words – mostly photos. Artists leave their mark, and patrons make sure it can be shared with the community. Art adds beauty, delight, and a moment to pause, if you take advantage of stopping to notice. Here are some examples of work by artists along the Gulf Coast. All of these … Continue reading Outdoor Art
How much do you think about the Kingdom of God? What’s your understanding about the Kingdom of God? It is another one of those theological concepts where all of Christendom is not of one mind. My heart overflows with a pleasing theme; I address my verses to the king; my tongue is like the pen … Continue reading Thy Kingdom Come
Some people have an unquenchable thirst for knowledge. It becomes a life-long pursuit of their passions – well, those from the neck-up, anyway. Information, inspiration, revelation - something new to feed the mind and soul. Perhaps you are in this category. Why would you be reading somebody’s blog, otherwise? I am one of those people … Continue reading Information Overload
Today, we honor those men and women who have spent time in service to our country. Veterans Day is not the same as Memorial Day in May, where we remember those who died. This is for our living veterans. Many have served and sacrificed at high cost to them. When we see those in uniform, … Continue reading Veterans Day 2019
Has it been a month since we took a walk around the garden? It has been a month and a day, but truthfully, not much has changed since then. Autumn in DownSouth, Alabama is not as impressive as in New England or other places that have changing, spectacular colors. Most of our trees are still … Continue reading November in the Garden
UMC Hymnal #711 - Author William How. Churches in the mainline and those with more liturgical styles recognize All Saints Day on the Christian calendar. It’s officially November 1 but celebrated in worship on the first Sunday of November. For those who don’t follow this cycle of identifying special days during the year, you might … Continue reading For All The Saints