Friday, November 1, 2013

Oh, deer!

   Earlier this week I grabbed my camera and set out for a section of a park and reservation area very close to my home. This park system covers a vast area of about 500 square miles I think. There are lakes, rivers, creeks, water falls, an array of beautiful wildlife, a zoo, and right now in particular there are trees with such splendid colors. I thought I would get some photos of the trees in the morning and then go out again in the afternoon and take photos of the same trees in afternoon light. It sounded like a great idea to me. I was however stopped in my tracks when I saw what you will see below in this first set of photos. I decided to spend my time in that morning sun just down the street from my house. We see deer often. I was just so taken by these. On the whole of our street there is only one real garden of sorts in a front yard. This garden was pretty this summer. It is just down from my house, and the deer love to stop there. 

Good morning!

Yes, I am still here but will not disturb your breakfast. Carry on.

Done eating this one.

Crossing may not be such a good idea just now.

Heading back for a minute, this traffic is not letting up.

Good idea. They were not as done as they thought.

Maybe the traffic will lighten up. I think she would like to get over there and back in the woods.

Two more are now considering the jaunt across the street.

Fawn figures if they leave she will go, too.

Breakfast in that little garden is now over. See you soon.

   Later that afternoon I sort of stayed with my original plan. I grabbed my camera and headed for the wood nearby. It all came together quite nicely because I started out to take piccies of the sun on the leaves in the early morning in comparison to the sun on the leaves in the late afternoon. I got to see lovely deer in the morning and in the afternoon I came across this beautiful buck.

Well, hello there handsome!

Do you know how magnificently your Creator created you?

We are not through here. I fully intend to follow you deeper into this wood.

His antler's blend like branches. He completely blends in at a distance. God protects, period.

So regal.

  I could have spent the whole of the afternoon into evening in that wood with that buck. However, things at home needed tending to. As I was posting this it occurred to me that I had no real purpose for this post except to share the photos of those lovely creatures. I never get tired of seeing them. And then it occurred to me there is a book I have been meaning to share with you, and this is just the post for it. So I ran up to my bedroom, took it out of my bedside table and took this photo of it. 

   That is the hard copy of Hinds' Feet on High Places my husband gave me for Christmas, in 1996. My original paperback copy proudly displayed the love shown to her with much fraying of pages and falling apart in general. I loved opening this that year. 
   Since elementary school I have battled a fear. This fear would be triggered by a certain environment and was paralyzing, emotionally and physically. Sometimes, often, my physical response would be flight. Initially I would be unable to move, sometimes not breath, but then would be in high flight mode. This fear still tries to dominate and destroy me. I sought counseling, and still...fear. After decades of hell, and I choose that word rightly, I realized it was a spiritual matter. Only God was my answer. In the last couple of years I have made the issue a matter of conversation between God and I. The Holy Spirit has shown me things and through my time in the Word of God and time fellowshipping with God, I have learned some things. Life changing things. I have pressed in, become more honest and transparent and real in my time with God. My relationship with Him is stronger than ever and so my trust and faith have grown deeper. I have gone higher with God that I ever knew possible. As I have grown and changed in my heart, my life has changed and fear no longer has its devastating and debilitating grip on me. I can do stupid stuff to usher fear right back in, but I have no desire to do so whatsoever. That which got me into such a bondage of fear was really innocent on the part of this young elementary school girl. A girl who believed a Girl Scout leader. It was not until a Sunday School teacher took the time to ask me about a comment I made in her class that I was shown how deceived I was. I love the story of David and Nathan where the instant David's eyes are opened he repents. He loved God and when shown the error of his way, he changed. That is what repentance does. When I saw what Mrs. Mucci was saying to me was true; I immediately stopped doing what I was doing. I loved Jesus so much as a kid that when I saw this deception for what it really was that I was grieved ~ deeply. It was nothing to walk away and never look back once I saw and understood the truth. However, I would battle the effects of that for decades to come.
   When first I read Hinds' Feet on High Places by Hannah Hurnard, I was in my twenties. I could not put this book down because I so related to the main character, Much Afraid. When she was in her paralyzed mode, and when she wanted to run, I could vicariously felt her fear so deeply I felt my own heart beat speed up, and at that moment in time I would forget I was reading a book. The ending was so beautiful and gave me hope. That is why I read it so many times. I was looking to be free of that fear. I have not read this book for some time because I have grown in the knowledge of Who God is and how deeply and unconditionally He loves me. I may read it again someday. I do keep it in my night table by my bed. If I do, it will only be to see how marvelous God is and to remind me from where He redeemed me from. Though a good book, it is not the Word of God. God's Word and developing our relationship with Him is where our deliverance comes. 
   This brilliantly woven allegory is about the matchless, unconditional and everlasting love of God toward us, and the frustration, destructive crippling and the futility of living in the faithless state of fear. I have lost count of the times I have read it, but my first go round with it was in the early 1980’s ~ it has never lost its beauty for me.

The Lord God is my strength,
And He has made my feet like hinds’ feet,
And makes me walk on my high places.
For the choir director, on my stringed instruments.
Habakkuk 3:19 (NASB)

   I really do not want to put this on here, but must. Though I do recommend Hind's Feet on High Places by Hannah Hurnard, I do not recommend her other writings. I praise God for this book as I believe He inspired her to pen it. Her other works do not align with scripture and some vary off considerably. Please check here for a really well written and though brief a quite good biography of Hannah Hurnard. You will need to click on the bright pink book that says "Look Inside" and then scroll down a few pages to where it will read "Author Biography". The brief biography will begin there.

The lame will leap like a deer,
    and those who cannot speak will sing for joy!
Springs will gush forth in the wilderness,
   and streams will water the wasteland.  
Isaiah 35:6 (NLT)


Miss Jean said...

What magnificent creatures!!!! Thanks so much for stopping by and your kind words. Maggie will be 6 in January and we thought she needed a little friend. Am I safe in assuming that Baxter is a Scottie? I'm looking forward to going through your blog!

Barbara said...

Gosh, not the kind of visitor a gardener wants in their garden even though they are magnificent animals.
Interestingly I was sorting through some books for a disabled friend in order to take them to a Christian second hand book stall and came across Hinds Feet which I had not read in decades. Decided to read through it again before passing it on and there you are writing about it.
Thanks for visit and encouraging comments Teresa. Blessings.
Loved seeing your neighbourhood photos having seen them only on Google earth.

Kim said...

Beautiful pics of those deer! Not a gardener's friend, but still so lovely to look at. I always get a thrill when I see live deer, usually in the woods on the side of the road.

Love the way you added the part about Hinds Feet on High Places. Perfect, my friend!