A couple of years ago my wife had this portrait of Lucy painted and gave it to me as a birthday present. It is incredible and you can see the soul of the pup in the eyes. Lucy will be four years old in December and she is the source of endless joy around the house.
Happy Fall Y’all!!!
Recently my wife went into Autumn decorating mode and filled the house with vignettes of fall color. Here are a few examples.
If you think these are good, just wait until she puts her Santa’s helper hat on for Christmas. Have a blessed week.
Monday’s Music Moves Me
The theme this week at 4M is songs honoring National Neighbor Day or Sons Day. I will skip the obvious Mr. Rogers, “Won’t You Be My Neighbor” and move on to other subjects. I am an only child so I wouldn’t know anything about being the Seventh Son.
While “son” is not in the title, a brother is a son. The lyrics speak to where we would do well to be as a nation, thinking more of one another than ourselves. My fellow man…”He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother.”
I remarked that I am an only child…an only son. I know that my parents loved me with a special love because I was their only offspring. My mother wrote letters to congressmen, pleading not to send me to Vietnam because I was her only blood relative. It was to no avail and I served my country in Southeast Asia. I can only imagine the agony that God Himself suffered when His only Son was crucified by an angry mob, thinking they had put an end to the teachings of Christ. But on the third day, the stone rolled back from the tomb and God the Father spoke to His Son and said, “Arise My Love”.
Obviously, I have a treat just out of frame that Lucy is lazer-focused on.
North Forest Lights
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art is a world-class facility that focuses on the works of American artists from the days of the colonies to the present. It is a spectacular place to visit…and it’s free!!! Currently there is an exhibit on the trails around the building called “North Forest Lights”. It consists of five works placed in the forest with special lighting effects and set to music. The trail is approximately one and one half miles long I did not capture images of some of the purely light exhibits because I needed to do long exposures and that would require a tripod and just get in everyone’s way. Here a a few images that I did manage to capture.
This first piece is titled Forest Frequencies. It is a circular maze type structure with lights in the top of the pathway. The work varies in height from about 3-1/2 to 4-1/2 feet. It’s an interesting work that this image doesn’t truly do it justice.
This piece is titled “The Hearth”. The description is, “A bonfire like sculpture to immerse yourself in the warm glow and beating heart of nature.” The work is probably fifteen feet in diameter. The light changes from red to blue and the white lights beyond move and come from all directions. There is music that accompanies this exhibit as well.
This exhibit is a massive tree with lights place throughout the branches. There is a microphone where the couple is standing. You sing into the microphone (not to worry, no one can hear you) and the lights change colors that supposedly reflect the colors of your voice. Interesting.
There is simply no way to do this exhibit justice. This is a light and music show set over a dry stream bed. You stand on a bridge, over the stream bed, and the light show takes place literally at your feet. It is titled, “Memory of Water.” The image and colors change with the music. Awesome is the only word that comes to mind.
If you are in the area between now and April, the exhibit is open every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday beginning at dusk. There is an admission fee because of the number of staff required to be on the grounds. You can get tickets from the website, http://www.crystalbridges.org. It is worth the trip. I plan on going back and photographing it again later in the year
Monday’s Music Moves Me
The theme this week at 4M is free choice. I get to pick whatever theme and music I want to post. So, in keeping with the light show above, I’ll spend a few minutes talking about the greatest light and music show that is yet to come.
Followers of Christ have a belief and hope of the coming of the Savior. This event is commonly known as The Rapture and it applies only to believers. The Rapture of the church is first mentioned in 1 Thessalonians 4:16, “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, and the vooice of tf an archangel with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. We Shall Rise! Revelation 1:7 tells us that the entire world will be a witness to this event, “Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him…”
Chapter 20 of Revelation tells us that there will be a judgment of all mankind and verse 15 specifically says that anyone not found in the Book of Life will be cast into the lake of fire. I know where I will be “When the Roll is Called Up Yonder”, how about you? Revelation 21:1 describes the new heaven and the new earth. In verse four we find that because Satan was bound in chapter 20, there will be no tears, no death, no sorrow, no crying, and no more pain for those who have placed their faith and trust in the Alpha and Omega, Jesus Christ.
That day that I leave this life and step into eternity will begin a life filled with “Joy Unspeakable”!!! Have a blessed week.
A Happy Place
I love where we live. We moved to Northwest Arkansas in 1987 for work. It was the best thing we ever did. Not long after we relocated, I discovered fishing. There is a great creek just north of town for wade fishing. There is a trout stream about an hour away. There is Beaver Lake about twenty minutes from the house and we own a lot in Bella Vista that gives me access to seven small lakes to fish for bream, blue gill and bass. I don’t own a boat anymore, although I have seriously considered investing in a pre-owned bass boat, but I just don’t think it’s in my best interest any longer. Believe me, that was hard to admit. So, this chair and the nearest dock have become my “Happy Place”. Thankfully I have several happy places nearby.
Monday’s Music Moves Me
This week at 4M is a freedom of choice week so I get to pick any music I prefer. I think I will migrate back into inspirational music. I grew up with the hymns of the church and they are still near and dear to my heart. I was also inspired by the early “Contemporary Christian” artists like Dallas Holm, Sandy Patti, and Russ Taff. I still like newer artists like Zach Williams, Jeremy Camp, and Lauren Daigle. And then there’s southern gospel…I love southern gospel. So here are a few songs and artists that I have in my worship playlist.
One of my favorite groups over the past 20+ years has been Mercy Me. They have produced music that has spoken to me through some of the most difficult days of my life. Now that I clearly have more days behind me on this planet that those that remain ahead of me it is comforting to know that God has already prepared a place for me to spend eternity and I am Almost Home.
One only has to look at this world in which we live and realize that mankind is not good by nature. We are arrogant, rebellious, self-centered, greedy, and unkind to one another. Our streets are filled with crime, sex trafficking plagues this world, and people everywhere live in fear and poverty. For the Christian, we can look forward to that day when when 1 Thessalonians 4:16-18 become a reality. The trumpet will sound, the eastern sky will split and the King of kings will come with those saints who have passed before us and we will meet our Lord in the air. This is reserved only for those who claim the name of Jesus as Lord and Savior. That will be the day “When We All Get To Heaven”!
I look forward to that day when I meet my Savior and I take possession of my mansion. What will my new neighborhood be like. Scripture (Revelation 21:4) tells me that God will wipe away every tear from my eyes; there will be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away. That’s my kind of neighborhood. Until then, I will Press On.
Every time I read His Word I find a new reason to Praise the Lord. Have a blessed week.
Day Trip – Siloam Springs, AR
Recently my wife and I made a day trip to near-by Siloam Springs, Arkansas which is only a thirty minute drive from our house. Siloam Springs main claim to fame is home to John Brown University, a small liberal arts college. Siloam also has a beautiful park in the center of town and many of the surrounding buildings are undergoing renovation and upscale shops and restaurants are becoming more common. We had lunch at an eatery called 28 Springs, which is located in an Art Deco structure that was formerly car dealership. The food was outstanding and reasonably priced. My wife enjoyed a salad while in savored a Cranberry Quesadilla sandwich. After lunch we shopped a couple of stores, strolled across the street to the park and captured a few images. We left our house about 10:30 a.m. and were back home by 2:30 p.m. I am sure we will return to explore a little more of our neighboring town in the Ozarks.
Monday’s Music Moves Me
The dog days of summer signal the ending of hot weather and a reminder that fall is just around the corner, so the theme for the 4M gang this week is end of summer songs. I thought I would start with a newer arrangement of a classic. Originally released by Johnny Mercer with Jo Stafford, “Autumn Leaves” has been covered by a multitude of super stars and now has a new arrangement by Eric Clapton. Enjoy.
One super group that came out of my young adulthood was Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. When the group split Neil Young released a couple of great albums. One song that fits our theme is Harvest Moon.
Coming straight out of the late sixties was a mixed quartet super-group. The Mamas & Papas biggest hit was California Dreamin’.
One final blast from the past. Nearly every child of the sixties owned the Simon and Grafunkle album Sounds of Silence. One lovely tune to come out of that effort is “The Leaves are Green”. Have a blessed week.