Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end. So I concluded there is nothing better than to be happy and enjoy ourselves as long as we can. And people should eat and drink and enjoy the fruits of their labor, for these are gifts from God. – Ecclesiastes 3:11-13
It’s a rainy Friday morning here in Wake Forest, and temperatures are not expected to rise beyond around 72-degrees. It’s the perfect day for hunkering down, brewing an extra pot of coffee, and diving into some serious work.
Rebekah, who pretty-much takes over the dining room as her at-home office, has a long list of work projects she’s immersed in. For me, it’s organizing details, finishing up some writing and a phone interview for my Florida Methodist job, and continued editing and design work for my novel.
In fact, I’m even sneaking in a cover-design preview as one of today’s “four photos” (check it out, I hope you’ll be excited and can’t wait). I plan to release the book before the end of September, so maybe this is a good time for a little early “buzz.”
I know I’m a proud, extremely biased, totally not objective grandfather. But – seriously – aren’t these children the cutest? Our daughter, Naomi, has an artist’s eye for a photograph, and she has learned how to capture a whole story in one image.
Yesterday, David checked in at his elementary school, parked his supplies in his desk, and played with some of his new friends. He starts next week, and he has been brimming with excitement about starting school all summer long.
David held out his hand to his kindergarten teacher: “Hello, my name is David Henry Campbell,” he said. “It’s so nice to meet you.” Then he shook her hand.
The rainy day photograph is just another cool view from my parents’ front porch, looking over through our two driveways. Yes, it’s been four years now, but this is all still fresh and new to me. I’m still delighted by the people, the location, the topography, the town, and the overwhelming beauty of North Carolina.
Then photo number four features summer cuisine here where fresh vegetables abound. Recently I’ve been doing a lot of roasting. Just a light coating of olive oil, generous amounts of rosemary, sage, and thyme from my garden, plus sea-salt, then into the oven they go.
This time I lightly breaded some Tilapia and pan fried the fish in olive oil to round out the meal. That, plus some of Rebekah’s buttermilk biscuits, and you can tell why we don’t eat out a lot anymore!
Four-photo-Friday. Just a glimpse into life here around Maul Hall, and a break from the more serious news that’s dominating so much of our conversation right now.
But of course this is life, this is the day-to-day ebb and flow of what defines us. Important work, family, our home, and our life together making absolutely everything beautiful in its own way.
“God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart….”
It’s good to remember what makes life beautiful. It’s not so much what we see, but how we see it. Beauty and gratitude are often one and the same thing.
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.