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Savoring My Passage - the monthly journal of A. C. Gray

September 2011
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Perhaps the yellow school bus is the iconic symbol for September.  Looking back on long ago Septembers and watching school children today with their back packs bring warm memories for those of us who are “up in years”.  Gone are the summer holidays and cooling breezes of autumn signal the march of time as another year wafts rapidly toward winter.  These buses carry the most treasured and valuable cargo of America and no vocations are more noble or important than the bus driver who is charged with their safe arrival to and from school and homes and those who teach them. Their passengers will too soon shoulder the responsibilities of our world. 

     Now along the rural roads of our Shenandoah Valley comes abundant evidence of a world tilting on its axis.  Mennonite roadside wagons and nearby farm markets sell from the abundance of their gardens.  Summer merges into autumn with multicolor glory, reminding me again of the Master Artist who brushes the seasons with His poignant Úlan, magic, bounty and grace. I petition Him for a greater awareness of His presence.

Chicken Coop
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   Chicken Coup

 

“…There are almost two Gods, the inscrutable God whose ways are past finding out and the God made known to us in Christ.  He is still a consuming fire, but He burns that He may purge and chasten and heal.  He is not a God of idle whim, because the cross is not the last word.  He who gave His Son unto death also raised Him up and will raise us with Him, if with Him we die to sin that we may rise to newness of life.  Who can understand this?  Philosophy is unequal to it.  Only faith can grasp so high a mystery.  This is the foolishness of the cross which is hid from the wise and prudent.  Reason must retire….How amazing that God in Christ should do all this; that the Most High, the Most Holy should be the All Loving too; that the ineffable Majesty should stoop to take upon Himself our flesh, subject to hunger and cold, death and desperation.  We see Him lying in the feedbox of a donkey, laboring in a carpenter’s shop, dying a derelict under the sins of the world.  The gospel is not so much a miracle as a marvel, and every line is suffused with wonder. 

Roland H. Bainton, Here I Stand, A Life of Martin Luther

 
Shenn's Red Barn 3

Ask God to take you to a new depth of faith, where His love and mercy will keep you safe from the raging storms of life.  Ask Him to give you a  “submarine faith” so that He becomes more real to you in times of trial.  Listen to the psalmist’s confident voice in the midst of the storm:  “God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble.  So we will not fear, even if earthquakes come and the mountains crumble into the sea.  Let the oceans roar and foam.  Let the mountains tremble as the waters surge!”  (Psalm 46:1-3)- from the book When God Prays by Skip Heitzig.


Passion Butterfly

 

 

                


It is not the Word of God that is on trial:  it is the man who reads it.  And if he can’t find God speaking there, it is not the Bible he is judging:  it is himself.  He has nothing to draw with, and the well is deep.  What is the vessel that we need, to draw water at this deep well?  It is a reverent and devotional spirit.  It is a pure heart, and a surrendered will.  ‘Put off thy shoes from thy feet, for this is holy ground’.  And Jesus never said - ‘Blessed are the critics, for they shall find God in the Bible.’  He said, ‘Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God’ there. ‘The Spirit,’ declared Paul, ’searches all things, yea, the deep things of God.’  And when we have that Spirit, then with joy can we draw water from the wells of salvation.  Then in the pages of the Bible, we meet God face to face.” 

Amber Fields
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Amber Fields with Sawtooth Mountains Backdrop -Idaho 

The Lighting Of The Leaves
Early Autumn Leaves

I will not leave you orphans;  I will come to you.  A little while longer and the world will see Me no more, but you will see Me.  Because I live, you will live also.  John 14:18-19