In Greek, "eirenepoios" means peacemaker.

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God” (Recorded words of Jesus - Matthew 5:9.)

Each of us can choose to herald peace...allow it to flow through us much as the layered tones and muted shadings of light and dark fuse themselves amongst these multi-colored leaves.

Will we - created by each stroke of the Master's hand, memorably different from one another in hue and saturation, in personality and temperament... be viewed as the gentle brushwork of His heart within our culture? Will we live out our uniqueness in harmony and grace, or will we be like broken limbs and torn leaves whose withered beauty resists time and torrent resulting in our collective demise.

In unity there is strength.

"Real strength never impairs beauty or harmony, but it often bestows it; and in everything imposingly beautiful, strength has much to do with the magic." ~ Herman Melville



Whether we walk through a unclouded, sun-washed day, or one drenched by torrential storms... whether the day is filled with warm breezes or one that is freezing cold buffeted by fierce winds... whether our bellies are full or empty... whether we are sad or glad... whether the bank account is full or depleted - we can all respond to the call of God... draw into the unexpected places of His presence... allow His word to precede our thoughts, petitions, and longings. We must remember: it is He who seeks us. We must be attentive to His Spirit - stretched out in His grace... listening in the quiet repose of our soul. Breathing in - the Spirit of God - allowing space for His love to flow into our heart... and breathing out His goodness to those around us.



Sehnsucht (a German word meaning intense, ardent longing).

Mine is an inconsolable yearning for God’s presence – an ardent longing that pierces into the core of my being. I bow before Him now, pouring my vial of worship over Him. I draw from the well of His presence. He is my heart’s innermost longing - my heart’s deepest desire. When I seek Him with my whole heart... wait patiently for Him... search for Him... pursue Him... He will be found in me.

I desire fresh oil, Lord - pouring from Your secret place. I am refreshed in Your presence. Saturate me, envelope me, cover me. Sustain me with Your love. I am love sick. Enlarge my heart. Fill me with hope. Transform me. I am strengthened in You. I am enriched by You. I delight in You and You in me. Wash over me with Your love.

O gracious One - lover of my soul - how I love You and long to be with You. To be in the place of silent communion - where even thought basks on the breath of the wind - there is a call to intimacy. Let your peace rest gently upon my spirit, Oh, Lord. Would that others know you as I do; yet deeper still. My soul waits upon You, my God.

“For I know the plans that I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. ‘Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. ‘You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. ‘I will be found by you,’ declares the LORD…‘ Jeremiah 29:11-13



Hike a short distance up Union Creek along the upper Rogue River near Prospect Oregon and you'll witness the striking beauty of the Rogue Gorge.

Initially formed by the regurgitation of Mount Mazama in the Cascade Mountain range and her red hot flow of smoldering lava spewing out of a gigantic caldera, this volcanic eruption also created one of the world’s natural wonders - Crater Lake National Park.

The magnificently sculpted lava tubes – some miniscule, others massive – are a puzzling labyrinth of cavernous intricacy. Some pierce to the surface, others hide underground. Relying on the magnitude of winter’s melting snow, the turgid waters course violently, spinning rocks and pressing small pebbles into the notched walls of the Gorge.
Restless white foam splashes playfully against ferns and mossy rocks, then mysteriously, the frigid waters are swallowed into an underground maze of friction as the river is diverted through bends and chutes, only to waken anew, under the canopy of sugar pines and giant evergreens blanketing the fertile forest floor.

The river makes her mark on the rock.

In much the same way, certain life experiences mark us along our passageways.

The Greek word “Sphragizo” means to set a seal upon, mark with a seal. The dictionary defines “marked” as: set aside, designated, signifying ownership, keep.

Sometimes it is tragedy or sorrow that marks us for a season – perhaps even a lifetime. Sometimes we work to achieve a goal, complete a task, are applauded for an accomplishment, or acquire an inner satisfaction of joy by overcoming an obstacle. These too can mark our path.

In similar ways, love, encouragement, and grace mark our paths in distinctive ways.

Although we cannot make claim to it’s origin, the imprint of a “divine seal” upon our lives proclaims our identity in concert with the immutability and authority of a God who oversees all things, who shapes, builds up, and conforms us to higher purposes – things that lie beyond our present understanding.

The constant assurance of such a loving, intimate investment is both astounding and incomprehensible, except that mysteries do seem to unlock and revelation liltingly cascades upon the elegant ribbons of grace. If we seek discovery for why we are marked thusly – why we are sealed until the day of redemption - we will surely find ourselves (created in/imprinted with His image), to also be called His children. To this understanding and assent, our heavenly Father sets His seal. Forever after, we are hedged-in to the foundation of a love that stands sure; and somewhat serendipitously, we know we are His.

Having given us the Spirit in our hearts as a pledge - marked by inheritance and redeemed as God’s own possession, we give glory to the One who created us... loves us with an everlasting love... and has brought us out of the darkness into the light.

Like the mighty rushing waters along the Rogue Gorge, gazing upon it’s inlets and coves, we are sheltered under the wings of His outstretched arms – instruments of love bathed in pools of peace. Here, we receive both the rare and the common… we love the unlovely… we embrace change… we are nurtured and strengthened in faith... we are reinforced, restored, refreshed… . In this place is where we are as much alive to freedom as we are anchored in hope.


Life: A Kaleidoscopic Mosaic

The ribbons and patterns of relationships form an intricate mosaic that we, in our humanity, are inadequate to controvert.

We find ourselves shaped and molded by piercing revelations steeped in everyday encounters. Such penetrating stirrings may arouse the galleries of ambrosial longing - or, they may pummel our hearts into a naked millpond where we lay frozen in bewilderment.

In either place, we must contemplate and mine the hidden treasures that bid our soul. We must not hasten either cry: neither trumpet nor lament; neither emote in regret nor languish in sorrow. Rather, understand each offering... embrace each interaction... as a compliment to the underpinnings of our destiny.

It may be - as we gaze reflectively, metered through life's delicate rhythms - that there... deliciously entwined by a mysterious kaleidoscope of expression, that we unclothe the irresistible choreography and spellbinding intrigue of hope. ...there, where we abandon ourselves to the crescendos, dicrescendos, and the ambiguated complexities of intimacy.

Gawkishly, we may find ourselves unconstrained - except by the reverberations of love. Or, conversely, we may be swept into the wretched sadness of pain or despair. Nonetheless, and most assuredly, we must never view ourselves as impoverished, only sustained... in humility, remarkably anchored to the never-ending, uninterrupted pulses of generosity and kindness.

In this pause, as unfettered silence tethers us to grace; mysteries are unlocked... wonderment is unveiled. There... in stillness, we unbend (yet again), as the hushed notes of friendship and peace populate our soul.

"Every experience God gives us, every person He puts in our path, is the perfect preparation for a future only He can see." Corrie ten Boom Read about this Heroine of Faith


Leafy Waifs Drift in the Serpentine

Another gorgeous piece of eye candy from Bill Miller of Miller Canoes - shot on eastern Canada's Serpentine River.

Nictau Ice

Streaks of blue light penetrate sheets of ice in Nictau, New Brunswick, Canada's minus 30 degree weather. Shot by my camera-toting friend, Bill - a third-generation canoe builder and founder of the world-famous "Fiddlers on the Tobique."
(Image artistically modified in Photoshop-CS3 by Fade to Black.)

Learn more about Bill here:


Dead or Alive?

DOA: An acronym most often used in hospital emergency rooms meaning: "dead on arrival."

Death: finality?
We are birthed in death.

Is such a statement conflict or truth?
A conundrum? A paradox?

We live to die and die to live.

The Dead Sea has an inlet but no outlet. Nothing lives in the Dead Sea. Despite the tributary that flows into it, every year a little more of it evaporates.

To produce life, passageways must be both nurtured and released.
As with us; we must both possess and lavish that which cascades into us onto another.
We must give. We must receive.

Are you? Do you? Will you?

If so...
Dead on arrival might actually be something to embrace, after all... .


The Quiet Places

There's a space inside each of us - a place we inhabit separately, autonomously, from the world around us. This place is unconstrained from the influence, pressures, and resulting fissures created through activity, media, friends, and loved ones. This solitary place - this untilled moor - whose tracks, while rich, may lay barren - yet uninhabited by boundless treasure. This is where the Spirit whispers to the deep places of our inner being. This place is where new light dances freely on the crest of our soul. It's vitality flows from the headwaters... pools on the outer banks... and probes the deep places, transforming our souls. This place is where revelation innocently yet powerfully invades us. In this place we are awakened, refreshed, and renewed. We travel to places of wholeness we can never find in the frenetic distractions of a world disquieted by busyness. If we abandon and surrender - fully yielded to it's bouquet - permitting its scent be spilt as a balm, our capacity for more resplendent moments will begin to envelop us. We will be heartened. We will be en-couraged. Saturated by peace, we will luxuriate in this pause. We will be released to hope and to faith. As we are painted peace in these quiet places, we will be restored, and love will be our sanctuary.

Photo Attribution: MNC - my precious daughter


...in believing

Stand in the ways and see and ask for the old path, where the good way is and walk in it; then you will find rest for your souls. Jeremiah 6:16

Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you received them, and you will have them. Mark 11:24


On Track

...by no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I've got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to what lies ahead. I'm off and running, and I'm not turning back... focused on that goal, toward every treasure God holds out. Do you have something else in mind? ...something less than total commitment? Be assured - God will clear your blurred vision—you'll see it yet! Now that we're on the right track, let's stay on it. Phil 3:13-16

"Every event of our lives is birthed in the meticulous, dynamic, and resolute intention of a God who is zealously, piercingly, and vigilantly devoted to seeing us pursue our destiny." Bejeva Likeian

“Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Appreciate your friends. Continue to learn. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is.” Mary Anne Radmacher


What caption might you apply?

Is this little chipmunk praying? ...offering you something? ...hoping it's feeding time? ...wanting you to plop the latest 'best seller' in his paws? Or ???

BOOKS: You Simply Can't Have Too Many

Books: The quietest and most constant of friends... the most accessible and wisest of counselors... and, the most patient of teachers.

The LongSword Winery Tasting Patio

In the rich fertile lands of the Applegate Valley - replete with vineyards tucked under the gentle slopes of the Cascade and Siskiyou Mountain ranges - I happened upon this charming tasting patio while en route to historic Jacksonville. I took great delight in their signature labels - especially a sweet dessert wine called, "Conversation" and another - "Accolade" (on the order of a delicate champagne).

Shrouded American Woman

Ancient thoughts sweep furtively through a pensive soul.