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  Autumn Leaves

Nothing worth doing is completed in our lifetime, therefore, we are saved by hope. Nothing true or beautiful or good makes complete sense in any immediate context of history; therefore, we are saved by faith. Nothing we do, however virtuous, can be accomplished alone; therefore, we are saved by love. No virtuous act is quite as virtuous from the standpoint of our friend or foe as from our own; therefore, we are saved by the final form of love which is forgiveness. -Reinhold Niebuhr


Autumn Leaves




Faith is the gaze of a soul upon a saving God.  While we are looking at God we do not see ourselves – blessed riddance.  The man who has struggled to purify himself and has had nothing but repeated failures will experience real relief when he stops tinkering with his soul and looks away to the perfect One.  While he looks at Christ, the very things he has so long been trying to do will be getting done within him.  It will be God working in him to will and to do....Now if faith is the gaze of the heart at God, and if this gaze is but the raising of the inward eyes to meet the all-seeing eyes of God, then it follows that it is one of the easiest things possible to do.  It would be like God to make the most vital thing easy and place it within range of possibility for the weakest and poorest of us....Neither does place matter to this blessed work of believing God.  Lift your heart and let it rest upon Jesus and you are instantly in a sanctuary though it be a Pullman berth or a factory or a kitchen.  You can see God from anywhere if your mind is set to love and obey Him.  A. W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God

autumn leaves





Canadian geese live here in the Shenandoah Valley year round, but September brings the mystical flights of the migrators in their V formation, passing through these environs to warmer wintering places.  Not only geese, but flocks of other birds as well have the same circadian rhythms.  I saw the first flight of them recently and knew that summer would soon be coming to an end.  Clouds of starlings swarm our valley twice a year.  Ornithologists inform us that the North American continent is populated with 200 million of them, descended from 40 introduced from Europe in New York City’s Central Park in the late 1890s.  Though a scavenger bird not protected by wildlife legislation, starlings, too, evoke a mystic bewilderment in their astonishing burlesque.  Who choreographs all this abracadabra?  Baby crickets began to emerge from my flower garden in late July and now their chatter can be heard well into the night.  Cicadas, too.  A divine Providence overseas all this evidence of life passages.  

   Three Geese 2                   

Supreme in my thoughts is the pecking order of all Creation, man and woman designed to reign over and rule where the Holy Spirit wants to take up residence.  This all gives new meaning to the sacrament of living, superbly stated in A. W. Tozer’s book, The Pursuit of God:  “By one act of consecration of ourselves to God” he writes, “ we can make every subsequent act express that consecration.  We need no more be ashamed of our body –the fleshly servant that carries us through life--than Jesus was of the humble beast upon which he rode into Jerusalem.  ‘The Lord hath need of [him].’ (Matthew 21:3) may well apply to our mortal bodies.  If Christ dwells in us, we may bear about the Lord of glory as the little beast did of old and give occasion to the multitudes to cry, ‘Hosanna in the highest.’...The knowledge that we are all God’s, that He has received all and rejected nothing, will unify our inner lives and make everything sacred to us.”



“The whole conviction of my life now rests upon the belief that loneliness, far from being a rare and curious phenomenon, peculiar to myself and to a few other solitary men, is the central and inevitable fact of human existence...Love is the ultimate expression of the will to live.  Quotes from Thomas Wolfe


Autumn Aspens

       Autumn Aspins



O Lord,  how manifold are thy works! In wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches....The glory of the Lord shall endure forever: the Lord shall rejoice in his works....Bless the Lord, O my soul.  Praise ye the Lord. Selections from Psalm 104