Good morning, Dear Friends and Prayer Partners! This is the day that the Lord has made and we will rejoice and be glad in it! After a prediction of showers for today, the sun is now shining and the cool wind is blowing, making for a cooler day. It was nice to have a rainy day yesterday to settle the pollen, making it a little easier to breathe and not blow! The oak trees have mostly stopped shedding now, thankfully, and new green leaves are all over. I went through hard enough showers to really wash off the car, so it doesn't look quite as dirty. :o)
I determined to walk as far as I could Saturday, because I knew showers were coming for Sunday, and I am glad I did! On the drive in, I saw the usual gator sunning on the bank to the right. Then I parked and took out my walking stick, and started across the bridge. I received two comments on the curled walking stick, both positive, and continued on to the first shelter. I looked all around for any sign of the babies and was just about to give up, when I saw one, whose head is getting larger, swimming under the walk. He headed for the bank and crawled up on the mud, so I left and continued on, stopping now and then, to look over the rail down into the underbrush. Sort of hoping to see an armadillo, but guess it was too muddy for them. I went on to the tower and was pleased to see a flock of ospreys circling high in the sky. They gradually circled down, and I mentioned to a young man with a camera that they sometimes hover. He had never seen them do that, so sure enough, a couple started hovering and kept it up for awhile. I was so excited! While the ospreys were putting on a show, another gator came swimming across from the north side of the lake, so I watched it for make its way near us and then sink all but his head.
I started back and looked over at the bank across the canal, when I got to the spot where they once in a while hang out, and sure enough, there was a huge one clear up on the bank! He must have been 10 or 11 ft. and very fat. I stood and watched him for a few minutes, and saw him uncurl one leg, but since I was standing in the sun, I started on back. I was slathered with sunblock, but that still doesn't give me enough protection. Guess I will have to start wearing a hat and have hat hair! Sigh. But I still enjoyed the walk and all creatures great and small. God is Good!
From the Promise Bible NLT:
What is failure in God's eyes?
Colossians 3:23-24 Work hard and cheerfully at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people. Remember that the Lord will give you an inheritance as your reward, and the Master you are serving is Christ.
Often our sense of failure is determined by the level of approval from others. Scripture reminds us to define success in terms of faithfulness to God. God will reward our faithfulness even if we fail in the eyes of the world.
Does failure make God love me less?
Hebrews 2:17-18 It was necessary for Jesus to be in every respect like us, his brothers and sisters, so that he could be our merciful and faithful High Priest before God. He then could offer a sacrifice that would take away the sins of the people. Since he himself has gone through suffering and temptation, he is able to help us when we are being tempted.
Hebrews 4:15-16 This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same temptations we do, yet he did not sin. So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it.
God love us unconditionally, Jesus Christ, our High Priest, entered fully into the human experience and knows our trials, and temptations. While caring parents may be hurt or saddened by a child's failure, that failure doesn't make them love the child less. In fact, failure often awakens greater tenderness and support toward the child. Just as the Lord understands our weaknesses, our failures help us understand his marvelous grace.
I always give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers with thanksgiving joy and love!
Love and hugs,