I wrote a post last week but it remains lonely in my drafts. The last few months have been experientially and emotionally packed. So many things to write about. I’m overwhelmed. This past week was the second year anniversary of the deaths of our nineteen Granite Mountain firefighters here in Prescott, Arizona. They died, defending people and homes in Yarnell, Arizona from the raging flames. The day following this anniversary is my birthday. What a juxoposition. . . .
I return to my books and research project, a bottomless pit of a project. Will I ever dig my way to the surface? My field of study, a theology of suffering, overwhelms me at times as abstractions are confronted by experience — the experiences of others near and around the world as well as my own. The ray of hope added to my project is that the latter part of the project deals with joy and its intersection with suffering.
I could not continue to face my studies until I added this dimension of joy which transforms the entire project. However, it also greatly lengthens the time and the size of the dissertation. Boy, do I need prayer! So do you! I smile. It is relieving to be dependent upon our loving and sovereign God. One of my favorite prayers is simply, “Lord, help!!” Followed by, “Thank You” (even before I see the help coming).
Our gravity craves some levity. Some lightness. Some loveliness. So… let me share with you some interesting and delightful photos I have taken rather recently (except for one). Just enjoy. Take a deep breath. Deep breathing relieves stress. And savor some scenes with minimal text.
Amanda, my daughter, and her dad in Sedona when she visited us in May.Wow! I took a great picture! (Well, I’m not known for great picture taking.)
The Yarnell fire took Dustin DeFord on June 30, 2013. Pray that the DeFord family will confound their sorrow by savoring sweet grace. Ryan DeFord was married last year, and he and his wife are expecting their first child soon. Joy follows sorrow, mingling with it. The joy of the Lord is our strength.
An awe moment in June, one of many, at Bryce Canyon in Utah.
May the Lord bless your days with awe moments, many of them.
Love the pictures Karen, especially the one of Papa O praying for his Grands! Blessed children with a precious and powerful legacy. May that strength of faith continue for many generations. Love you both. “Joy comes in the morning!”