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Showing posts from 2013

New Year

We've just had the old worn floorboards of our verandah replaced, a perfect place to contemplate the close of the old year and what we might do in the new one.

Psalm 134 New International Version (NIV)
"Praise the Lord, all you servants of the Lord
who minister by night in the house of the Lord.
Lift up your hands in the sanctuary
and praise the Lord.
May the Lord bless you from Zion,
he who is the Maker of heaven and earth."

Christmas star

In the garden the dogwood has unfolded its star shaped flowers to remind us the wait is nearly over, God's people all over the world will be celebrating Christmas soon.

Psalm 133:1 New International Version (NIV)
"How good and pleasant it is
when God’s people live together in unity!"

Summer garden

A sure sign that Christmas is coming, the blue agapanthus flowers.  The big patch down the back is flowering more freely this year because a year ago a tree fell down in the neighbour's yard opening it up to more light.

Psalm 132:11 New International Version
The Lord swore an oath to David,
a sure oath he will not revoke:
“One of your own descendants
I will place on your throne.


I have not had time to put up and decorate our Christmas tree yet but out in the garden nature has put up some decorations for me to enjoy.  These usually flower as early as October but it seems they were waiting for some rain.
This week's Psalm is a reminder to not be too busy in the lead up to Christmas, to find some time to be calm and quiet.  I'll work on that this week.
Reflection: Psalm 131:2  New International Version (NIV)
"But I have calmed and quieted myself,   I am like a weaned child with its mother;  like a weaned child I am content."


Last week when I was doing the clipping I had to clip back a holly bush, so brought the branches indoors to make a Christmas decoration.

And this week we reach Psalm 130 ... a perfect psalm for Advent.

Psalm 130:5-6 New International Version (NIV)
"I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits,
and in his word I put my hope.
I wait for the Lord
more than watchmen wait for the morning,
more than watchmen wait for the morning."


This weekend I gave azalea walk a hair cut and I am feeling very pleased with myself.

Psalm 129:4 New International Version (NIV)
"But the Lord is righteous; he has cut me free from the cords of the wicked.”


It has been raining this weekend. This photo was taken before the rain because I have been too busy to get out photographing this weekend.  My sister has been visiting from interstate so days spent talking, eating and enjoying each other's company around the kitchen table that used to be in our old family home.

Psalm 128: 3-4 New International Version (NIV)
"Your wife will be like a fruitful vine
within your house;
your children will be like olive shoots
around your table.
Yes, this will be the blessing
for the man who fears the Lord."


When I bought a jar of crab apple jelly at a market this year it had me wondering why there was no fruit on our big crab apple tree.  So this season I make a point of looking and I see they are very insignificant berry sized apples.

I've been working long hours lately.  Today's verse is a bit of a reminder about proportion.

Psalm 127:2 New International Version (NIV)
"In vain you rise early
and stay up late,
toiling for food to eat— for he grants sleep to those he loves."


The columbines are in flower at the moment.  I like them because they self seed and because they are native from America which reminds me of wonderful visits to that country and dear blog friends from there too.

Psalm 126:2-3 New International Version (NIV)
"Our mouths were filled with laughter,
our tongues with songs of joy.
Then it was said among the nations,
“The Lord has done great things for them.”
The Lord has done great things for us,
and we are filled with joy."


Was walking around the garden this afternoon and spotted this honeysuckle twined in the Viburnum, such a pretty plant but too vigorous so a weed.

The bush fires have abated.  During the week when things reached a fever pitch because of the high winds I figured I had better get out and sweep the leaves and make sure the hoses were in good order.  Lucky there was no fire close by because I found hoses buried underneath a carpet of entwining creepers, took me quite a while to clip them free.

Psalm 125:2 New International Version (NIV)
"As the mountains surround Jerusalem,
so the Lord surrounds his people
both now and forevermore.

Fire not snow

The snowball flowers were out recently but nothing is lasting for long this spring.  It is extremely dry with dry winds blowing strongly causing bush fires to rage in the mountains.  For those who have been concerned, at the moment our town is not near the menace that has already burnt hundreds of homes.

We hope and pray for better conditions to stem the blaze.

Psalm 124:8 New International Version (NIV)
"Our help is in the name of the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth."

An attentive hand

I just had to show you this.  The photo looks quite lovely with the forget me nots in the foreground and seaside daisies growing wild in the background and maples in fresh spring leaf.  But look at the weedy path and all the grass in the garden bed.  It's really quite a mess and needs an attentive hand ... but I love it anyway.

Psalm 123 The Message (MSG)
"I look to you, heaven-dwelling God,
look up to you for help.
Like servants, alert to their master’s commands,
like a maiden attending her lady,
We’re watching and waiting, holding our breath,
awaiting your word of mercy.


We've recently had the roof of our house painted.  It's nice as before it was a mixture of brown peeling paint and unpainted.

Psalm 122:1 New International Version (NIV)
I rejoiced with those who said to me,
“Let us go to the house of the Lord.”


The garden is throbbing with the sound of summer, a loud cicada chorus.  Cicadas live in the ground for seven years or so and when the time is right climb out, latch onto a plant then shed their skin and fly, sing and mate for a few brief weeks.

Psalm 121:2 New International Version (NIV)
"My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth."


The blossom is nearly spent and the trees are now all clothed in fresh green.

Psalm 120:7 New International Version
"I am for peace."


We received a shower of rain. It was welcome even through it brought down a shower of blossom with it.

Psalm 119:18 The Message
"Open my eyes so I can see
what you show me of your miracle wonders"


A week of very warm weather has hurried spring along. Blossom is bursting out, maples leaves are unfolding and a carpet of forget-me-nots and violets rolled out beneath them.  Such a festive time of year.

Psalm 118:27 New International Version
"The Lord is God,
and he has made his light shine on us.
With boughs in hand, join in the festal procession
up to the horns of the altar."


The wattle is flowering down the bottom of the garden.  Golden Wattle is Australia's floral emblem.  There are around 1000 species of Acacia (which we call wattle) to be found in Australia.  Many flower at this time of year and can be seen all over the place in the forests and in gardens.

Psalm 117 New International Version
"Praise the Lord, all you nations;
extol him, all you peoples."

Winter's waining

This week the wind turned on a chilly August blast.  I was glad to be snug in inside when I saw the cold moon rising against the sunset pink.  Winter is still here but those branches are swelling with the hope of Spring.

Psalm 116:5 New International Version (NIV)
"The Lord is gracious and righteous;
our God is full of compassion."


Somewhere far up north I thought of home and said when we get back the daffodils will be in flower.  I was pleased to find them there nodding welcome when we returned.

Psalm 115:14-15 New International Version (NIV)
"May the Lord cause you to flourish,
both you and your children.
May you be blessed by the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth."


We are back from our long journey north and back in time to see the first stirring of spring.

Psalm 114:7 New International Version (NIV)
"Tremble, earth, at the presence of the Lord,
at the presence of the God of Jacob."

Seeking the sun

I am going to take a blog break for a few weeks while I continue to seek sunshine and warm weather.  May these little jonquils bring cheer and warmth to your heart today.
Reflection: Psalm 113:3 New International Version (NIV)
"From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets,
 the name of the Lord is to be praised."


Camellias add a gentle touch to cold, dark winter days.

Psalm 112:4 New International Version (NIV)
"Even in darkness light dawns for the upright,
for those who are gracious and compassionate and righteous."

The beginning of wisdom

Autumn has moved into the winter sleep but I wanted to hang into it's beauty just a little longer.

Psalm 111:10 New International Version (NIV)
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
all who follow his precepts have good understanding.
To him belongs eternal praise.


I have already shown shots of the firewheel tree this season.  For some reason it has flowered freely this year with some on low branches so I could get a shot in situ, which I have never been been able to do before.  It's an unusual flower which because of this week's Psalm is reminding me of crowns.

Psalm 110 The Message (MSG)
The word of God to my Lord: “Sit alongside me here on my throne until I make your enemies a stool for your feet.” You were forged a strong scepter by God of Zion; now rule, though surrounded by enemies! ... The King-Maker put his King on the throne; the True King rules with head held high!

What to do at the end of your rope

This week we reach Psalm 109.  What a shocker -- full of curses.  I guess that was David's way of handling the difficulties at hand before turning to his Lord.

I remember one of my school friends writing in my autograph book "When you reach the end of your tether, tie a knot and hang on."

Psalm 109:21 The Message (MSG)
"Oh, God, my Lord, step in;
work a miracle for me—you can do it!
Get me out of here—your love is so great!—
I’m at the end of my rope."

I'm ready

Come let your soul sing a God-song with me.

Psalm 108 The Message (MSG)
"I’m ready, God, so ready,
ready from head to toe.
Ready to sing,
ready to raise a God-song:
“Wake, soul! Wake, lute!
Wake up, you sleepyhead sun!”


Every year around the 20th of May my wild unkempt garden transforms into a place of breathtaking beauty.

God is just as reliable in transforming wild and unkempt lives ... he changed mine.

Psalm 107:2 New King James Version (NKJV)
"Let the redeemed of the Lord say so."

New Leaf

It is time I turned over a new leaf.  I have been working far too many hours and setting aside things that are important.

Psalm 106:43-44 New International Version (NIV)
"Many times he delivered them,
but they were bent on rebellion
and they wasted away in their sin.
Yet he took note of their distress
when he heard their cry."

Lamentations 3:22-24 New International Version (NIV)
"Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion;
therefore I will wait for him.”"


Psalm 105:3-4 New International Version (NIV)
"Glory in his holy name;
let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice.
Look to the Lord and his strength;
seek his face always.

Flames of fire

Autumn colour is beginning to light up and burn.

Psalm 104:2-4 New International Version (NIV)
"The Lord wraps himself in light as with a garment;
he stretches out the heavens like a tent
and lays the beams of his upper chambers on their waters.
He makes the clouds his chariot
and rides on the wings of the wind.
He makes winds his messengers,
flames of fire his servants."

A short life

The Autumn colour is coming slowly to the garden this year because we are having wonderfully warm weather.  So instead here is one of the flowers that pop up briefly at this time of year.

Psalm 103:15-17 The Message
"Men and women don’t live very long;
like wildflowers they spring up and blossom,
But a storm snuffs them out just as quickly,
leaving nothing to show they were here.
God’s love, though, is ever and always,
eternally present to all who fear him."

Changing into something new

I have been thinking about Autumn, how it is given to us as a season of pure delight, perhaps as a preparation for the dreary months to come.

Psalm 102:25-27 The Voice
"In the beginning, You laid the foundation of the earth
and set the skies above us with Your own hands.
But while they will someday pass away, You remain forever;
when they wear out like old clothes,
You will roll them up and change them into something new, and they will pass away.
But You are the same, You will never change;
Your years will never come to an end."

The affairs of my house

Autumn is often a busy time of year in our home with guests coming down from the tropical north to experience autumn colour, winter chill and cosy log fires.  We currently have Ian's elderly Aunt and Uncle with us, the first guests for the season -- so a good excuse to polish and tidy and purchase some flowers for the hall table.

Psalm 101:2 New International Version (NIV)
"I will conduct the affairs of my house
with a blameless heart."

Endures forever

It's the seedy, berry time of year,when the plants make sure there is a next generation to follow.

Psalm 100:5 New International Version (NIV)
"For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
his faithfulness continues through all generations."


Over the road from our garden is the town tennis court so we often find tennis balls that have rolled down the driveway.

This is nothing we can do to set right the sinful deeds that separate us from our holy God. The ball was in the court of our God-Who-Forgives who through Jesus death and resurrection has broken the power of sin and restores all who seek His forgiveness.  How awesome.  Happy Easter!

Psalm 99:8-9 New King James Version (NKJV)
"You answered them, O Lord our God;
You were to them God-Who-Forgives,
Though You took vengeance on their deeds.
Exalt the Lord our God,
And worship at His holy hill;
For the Lord our God is holy.

World of wonders

Below the firewheel tree I showed last week.  I think nature is full of art.

Psalm 98:1 The Message (MSG)
"Sing to God a brand-new song.
He’s made a world of wonders!"


Autumn is such a  joyful time in the garden.  I watch for the signs of the season with delight.

The flocks of small birds migrating North -- I wanted to get a shot of the little grey fantails fidgeting and darting in the canopy of the pines.  I didn't succeed but spent a delightful half hour in the garden trying.

The flowering of the Firewheel tree -- It comes from the tropical rainforest so is a tall narrow tree reaching high for the sky.  The flowers are always too high up but the wind or a bird carried one down, for us placing it perfectly atop the spare wheel of the caravan.

Psalm 97:11 The Message (MSG)
Light-seeds are planted in the souls of God’s people,
Joy-seeds are planted in good heart-soil.


After weeks of rain the sun shone this week. I saw the light dancing on the leaves of the neighbour's Golden Robinia and thought of this week's Psalm.

Psalm 96:9 New International Version (NIV)
"Worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness;
tremble before him, all the earth."

Bow down

Everything in the garden is a little bowed down from the continuing rain.  After a hot dry start to summer it has ended cool and wet.  The calendar ticked over to Autumn this week and the plants are flowering true to form ... the garden is fragrant with ginger and belladonna lilies, the tuberous begonias are beginning to bud and I can see a flash of red flowers in the heights of the firewheel tree. Reassuring delights from the Lord our Maker.

Psalm 95:6-7 New International Version (NIV)
"Come, let us bow down in worship,
let us kneel before the Lord our Maker;
for he is our God
and we are the people of his pasture,
the flock under his care."


It's wet and slippery outside.  Slippery inside too where the hard raindrops have pressed their way through tiny cracks normally not found. Lots of rain and more forecast for this week.

Psalm 94:18-19 New International Version (NIV)
When I said, “My foot is slipping,”
your unfailing love, Lord, supported me.
When anxiety was great within me,
your consolation brought me joy.


The naked ladies (Belladonna lilies) are putting on their robes ... autumn must be near.

Psalm 93:1 New International Version (NIV)
"The Lord reigns, he is robed in majesty;
the Lord is robed in majesty and armed with strength"

The fallen

I was walking around the garden photographing the effects of the recent heavy rain storm.  It was a big surprise to find the image below at the bottom of the garden.  I had noticed a few weeks ago that the limb was dying. It's huge.

I guess we were saved having to get someone to cut it down. Where it is we have been able to attack it with chainsaw and clippers ourselves but there is still some work to restore the garden setting to its former peaceful presence.  One thing I know, we will be using the wood for heating and not taking it to the dump. We took some quite small limbs from the pine trees there at Christmas time (all recyclable green waste) and were shocked at the cost.  This one would be much more.  They've put up the fees to cover the carbon tax.

Psalm 92:6-7 New International Version (NIV)
"Senseless people do not know,
fools do not understand,
that though the wicked spring up like grass
and all evildoers flourish,
they will be destroyed forever.



It's raining outside.  Storms follow the summer heat.  When lightening flashes, thunder rumbles and rain pours down hard I'm always grateful for the shelter afforded by our cozy home.  I find it is like that during the storms of life too, it is then I am truly grateful to nestle in the shelter of my Lord.

Psalm 91:1
"Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will rest in the shadow of the Almighty."

Participating in Psalm Challenge #91 Robert at Athens Daily Photo

Growing up

In the past few weeks this baby King Parrot has been making a lot of noise calling for food but now is becoming more independent though the feathers have a way to go to before they reach the splendour of Mum and Dad ( I showed a mature male King Parrot last week). The whole family was visiting the cherry tree.

Psalm 90: 10,12 New International Version
"Our days may come to seventy years,
or eighty, if our strength endures;
yet the best of them are but trouble and sorrow,
for they quickly pass, and we fly away ...
Teach us to number our days,
that we may gain a heart of wisdom."

Participating in Psalm Challenge #90 sponsored by Robert at Athens Daily Photo.

Vibrant beauty

On the railing out by the pond.  It's great to see the little birds using the shallow top pond as a washing pool again.  However, I think this bigger bird was just hoping I would give it a feed.

Psalm 89:17-18 The Message
"Your vibrant beauty has gotten inside us—
you’ve been so good to us! We’re walking on air!
All we are and have we owe to God,
Holy God of Israel, our King!"

Participating in Psalm Challenge #89 with Robert at Athens Daily Photo.

A lost cause - not

Reflection #1: Psalm 88 The Message (MSG) "I’m written off as a lost cause, one more statistic, a hopeless case."
Psalm 88 is unrelenting in its despondence, but here is a lesson in not giving up,  I was surprised this week to find the lemon tree I had long abandoned to the weeds producing fruit.

And something else I found in the garden this week.

No that is not a hose lying beside the rocks of our refurbished pond it is a Red Bellied Black Snake ... and yes it is venomous.   We are having wonderfully warm weather (not fiercely hot like in the lowlands and inland) so snakes are on the move.  I understand they like to be near water to eat frogs and lizards and there are plenty of them at the pond.

It is the first time I have seen a snake in the garden. Because we have been enjoying the new tinkling pond we saw what has been no doubt lurking there all along. I will be a little more cautious when out and about in the future!

Reflection #2
Psalm 88 New International Version