Hello, everyone! The Lord gave us a beautiful night and lovely morning. It was so nice to be able to open the windows and let in the wonderful, outside air. Thank You, Father!
This week has been a mixture of burdens and blessings. Tuesday was my birthday. However, I woke up not feeling well. Also, there were some things on my mind. The Lord knew that it would be this way, so He prepared some special blessings. The first one came as I looked through the hymnbook. It is an old Cokesbury Methodist hymnal and has many of the old, wonderful hymns that speak to the heart. Read through a number of those. Then the Lord encouraged my heart with the reading of Psalm 77.
In the morning we got in our emails, and there was a wonderful surprise - an email from Dad and Mom! :-) In that email was a special birthday picture. Mom put this together, and it was so beautiful that it went right onto my desktop.
Also a friend and my Aunt Martha sent emails. A wonderful breath of fresh air on a difficult day.
Another blessing of that day was to look through the photos from Sunday and be reminded of the Lord's goodness in those things. Here are some of those photos.
During church there was a thunderstorm with hail. When we went outside after church, the Lord had painted a most glorious sunset.
As we looked at the cloud formation shown in this last picture, one of the men remarked that he could see what looked like a hand. A lady who saw the picture asked me if that was God's hand in the picture. Perhaps it was just a wonderful reminder from the Lord that His hand is in everything and that He has control over everything. It brings to mind such verses as Deuteronomy 33:27 and John 10:27-30. Truly, "The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge." (Psalm 19:1,2)
When we drove into the trailer park, we saw this creature. Another blessing from God. Here was something to keep down the mice and bug population. We also understand that they get rid of poisonous snakes. Of course, I'm sure the people who were driving in behind us thought I was crazy for getting out of the car and taking pictures. :-)
Today I have tried to focus on recharging spiritually and getting my mind focused on God's word and thinking of good things instead of all the troubles. Of course the troubles cannot be ignored, but renewing of the mind is most important.
This morning as I watered the garden, I saw the damage the blister beetles are doing. According to one thing I read, they usually do not cause extensive damage to the garden, but they might in years that they come out in large numbers. They cause damage by defoliating the plants. Well, they have done a very good job of that. The watermelons are starting to ripen, and apparently they love watermelons as well. One of the melons is just about completely devoured. Right behind them are the fire ants. The beetles opened up the sweet fruit, and the fire ants are helping themselves to this wonderful treat. Here is what the beetles have done to the kale plants. The plant shown here is completely stripped of leaves. The green leaves that can be seen below it are on one of the watermelon plants.
On the good side of things, I noticed that the wasps are starting to make a come back. There were wasps out there this morning taking bugs off the plants. That is one wonderful thing about these wasps. They pick worms and other small bugs off the plants and carry them away. There is also a parasitic wasp that lays its eggs in the tomato hornworm. I have tried to keep water in the little birdie bath outside, so maybe that is attracting the wasps. Have also noticed a toad out there. It is living under our AC unit. Not very clean water, but I guess it is cool. :-) Thank God for the blessings amidst the difficulties.