Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” Mark 9:24

Archive for the category “Fish”

Late Night Visitor – Gone Fishin’

When I was a child, my family spent summer weekends at our cottage and fishing was a popular activity. At dusk on Friday night, dad held a shovel in one hand and my little hand in his other, and we made our way to a specific spot in the yard to dig up worms to use for bait in the morning. The worm-hunting excursion brought a song to my dad’s lips and to this day, makes me giggle.

“Nobody likes me, everybody hates me. Sitting in the garden eating worms. Big fat juicy ones, small little thin ones. Oh, how they wiggled and they’d squirm.”

Shovel in hand and me on the sideline, dad made his first plunge into the dirt. I remember he used his foot to stomp on the shovel to get deep into the the earth. With his brawn, he’d flip the dirt pile over and I would start to paw my way through looking for big, juicy nightcrawlers. Dad put some dirt in an empty coffee can and empty whipped cream plastic bowl and I would drop nightcrawlers in one at a time. The lids of the containers had holes poked for the sake of oxygen and they were placed near our fishing gear for the morning.

At dawn on Saturday, when the lake looked as smooth as glass, we packed the fishing boat with our safety cushions, nightcrawlers, and fishing poles and motored to a fishing spot dad felt would wield a good catch.

Even though I caught the worms, I was not able to put them on the hook as well as he could, so dad did it for me. I fished with a bobber on my line so I could learn what it felt like when a fish was interested in my bait. Nibbles would make the bobber wiggle in the water and a hooked fish pulled the bobber out of sight. Depending on the size of the catch, it could take some effort to reel in, but once in the boat, we’d size up the catch. Too small a fish, it gets released to the water, if large enough by state fishing regulations, it becomes dinner.

So it is with grief. The tug at my heartstrings when a memory of my parents comes out of nowhere is like the bobber wiggling in the water. Then the milestone moments knowing they will not be there for a special event or holiday makes that bobber disappear. As hard as it may be to face what is on the end of the line, I reel it in. At this point, whether a nibble of grief or a major catch, it is healthy to face it. Sit with it if I must; ride it out until it fades away.

I have a big catch on the end of my line. June 24 will be my first birthday without either parent. It is the hardest thing for me to reel in right now. My parents made birthdays fun and grief is showing me the slideshow of memories on the wall of my mind.

Thank you mom and dad for bringing me into this world and giving me such a good life that I have, yet another, reason to grieve your passing.

1 Thessalonians 3:6 (NIV)  Timothy’s Encouraging Report

But Timothy has just now come to us from you and has brought good news about your faith and love. He has told us that you always have pleasant memories of us and that you long to see us, just as we also long to see you.


Mary Oliver’s Apprentice

Imitate an author and learn how to write. This was an assignment in my college Creative Writing class.

Freshen the Flowers, She Said
by Mary Oliver

So I put them in the sink, for the cool porcelain
was tender,
and took out the tattered and cut each stem
on a slant,
trimmed the black and raggy leaves, and set them all –
roses, delphiniums, daisies, iris, lilies,
and more whose names I don’t know, in bright new water –
gave them

a bounce upward at the end to let them take
their own choice of position, the wheels, the spurs,
the little sheds of the buds. It took, to do this,
perhaps fifteen minutes.
Fifteen minutes of music
with nothing playing.

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

Freshen the Fishbowl, He Said
by Kristine

So I put them near the window, for the view
was uncommon,
and took out half the water and moved the landscape
with my hands,
I chased the schools, and watched them all –
goldfish, guppies, killfish, mollies, barbs,
and more whose species I don’t know, in half murky water –
gave them

a waterfall of fresh tap water from a bucket to let them make
their own choice of school near the trees, the sunken ships,
the littlest of them all. It took, to do this,
perhaps twenty minutes.
Twenty minutes of care
with nothing dying.


 Philippians 4:5 (NIV)
Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 


One with Nature – June 25, 2011

11:05 am
As the sun warms the earth, on this beautiful summer day,
I become one with nature.

I am a spectator at a game of tag…two squirrels race around a tree, while two birds dart in and out of the trees above them.

The school of orange fish fellowship while nibbling on the unsuspecting bugs that land for a quick swim in the pond. Frogs croak contentedly as they sun themselves on the lily-pads nearby.

I have become a person of interest to a mob of tiny bees as I sit quietly on my blanket in the grass.

Birds call out to each other from tree to tree competing to see who can be the loudest.

The soft breeze energizes the leaves of the trees to serenade me with the sound of nature’s tambourines.

As the sun warms the earth, on this beautiful summer day, I realize how small I am as I become one with nature.

11:06 am

Psalm 50:11
New International Version (NIV)

I know every bird in the mountains, and the insects in the fields are mine.

I’m The One

I’m the one with the tongue sharp as a dagger that stabs people in the back. I’m the one who does not have time to visit the sick.  I’m the one who doesn’t donate to a food bank.  I’m the one who led the rally to stone the adulteress.  I’m the one who kills, steals and destroys.   I’m the one who hasn’t tithed because I worked hard for my paycheck.  I’m the bully.  I’m the one…I’m the one…I’m the one… It’s all about me!!

I’m the one that said nothing in secret; I have spoken openly to the world.  I’m the one who healed the lepers, the blind and the lame. I’m the one who fed thousands of people with a few fish and a few loaves of bread.  I’m the one who kept the adulteress from being stoned.   I’m the one who came to give life; life to the full.  I’m the one who meets all of your needsI’m the one that was flogged, scourged, spit upon, mocked, crowned with thorns, and crucified on a cross.  I’m the one…I’m the one…I’m the one…I did it for you.

 John 19:30 (New International Version, ©2011)

When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.

I Sit Listening: An Autumnal Equinox Experience for Women 9-22-2010

I attended this session with about 28 other women. We put our busy lives on hold to take in, through our senses, all the beauty of the changing seasons that we may otherwise overlook.

Sitting outside on blankets and mats, we were led into meditation by Jan Lundy. Our senses were awakened to the environment around us. After a short reading by Jan, we were encouraged to take 30 minutes to discover what the seasonal change means to us. We were allowed to do this in any way we wanted. Women wrote in journals, walked, explored the pond, or took a nature walk in the nearby wooded area.

I sat for a little while and enjoyed listening to a bird call to other birds as it sat high up in a tree. The leaves danced in the breeze as I gravitated to the pond. The scent of the pond made me reminiscent of childhood days spent at my family’s waterfront cottage playing in the shallow part of the lake and exploring a nearby swamp. As I looked more closely into the water, I saw minnows racing in unison to the top to snack on the unsuspecting bugs that landed on the water. I stood silently hoping to see a frog before it jumped in the water to hide from me. I stepped away to walk the nature trail, but found the muddy ground unappealing and I made my way back to the edge of the pond. Standing where I had been moments earlier, I was surprised to notice some very pretty yellow flowers at the water’s edge. I started walking around the pond and I saw more fish and more bugs. Then I spotted the two inch fish that stopped me in my tracks. This little fish was dead and lying on its side, washed up to the shore. I said a little prayer for the fish in case it was all by itself when it passed away and it had its own change of season.

Seasons change inside and outside of us. Embrace every change and give God the glory for the good changes and even the bad changes as he is in the center of each of them, holding us up.

Ecclesiastes 3:1 NIV
1 There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:

Take the time to meditate on the seasons of your life and look for God in each of them. He has been, is, and will be there with you.

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