Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Yes, it really is a good thing today is 5-photo-Friday. Seriously – I was this close to a political post and then I remembered the day of the week.

Not that I won’t share my thoughts soon. This just gives me a little more time to think it all through. Don’t worry, it’s not going to be partisan; but I do want to respond to the two conventions and ask a few questions that should help all of us as we look to the future.

Photo #1

– so this happened…

But back to the photos. It is my practice – most weeks – to share a few images that didn’t make it to my earlier posts.

I’ll start with this “work in progress” from my study. Remember the lightning strike from earlier in the month? Well, I finally got my replacement desktop computer and I’m in the process of setting things up.

I tend to do my more serious writing, book-length projects, and family finance stuff at my desk. Additionally, the iMac should open some new possibilities for my work vis-à-vis photo processing. So I am excited about the possibilities.

Photo #2

Max poses for National Dog Day photo

This, from “National Dog Day.” I asked Max to pose and this is what I got.

I’m including the photo because the dog initiative pretty much took over social media for the best part of the day. When we consider the level of angst, rancor, and vitriol that typically crosses my newsfeed then – official or not – the plethora of pooches was an absolute Godsend.

Photo #3

Wednesday evening’s small group zoom meeting brought 13 good men together for a deep conversation around Paul’s liberating message from the second half of Galatians 3. There is a lot to write about here, but I will limit it to these two bullets:

12 of the 13 men on small-group zoom call
  • So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith. (verse 26)
  • There is neither Jew nor Greek; there is neither slave nor free; nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. (verse 28)

It is a simple, elegant, uncomplicated message. Essentially, nothing else matters other than accepting the fact that the Jesus invitation is our invitation home. Not our ethnicity, not our national origin, not our place on the wide spectrum of gender identity. Good grief, certainly not our politics!

Photo #4

This may sound corny and homespun, but one of my absolute favorite times of the day is preparing a meal – lunch or dinner – with Rebekah taking a break from work, sitting in the comfy chair playing the ukulele, with Max doing his best to watch us both, anxious to avoid missing a pat on the head and always having a “heads-up” in case something beneficial (to dogs) happens in the kitchen.

– the other end of kitchen while I fix lunch

I love my family. I love, love, love this life Rebekah and I have together. I am so very deeply blessed from every possible point of view.

If I am on the lookout for “God sightings” on a daily basis I have no need to look far. Everything is right in front of me. The more I look, the more I see. It’s a matter of eyes open, heart open, ears open, spirit receptive and ready to say thank you.

The 5th photo leads off this gallery. Enjoy the smiles, then make sure and set your hear toward gratitude.

In love, and because love is the power that makes life so beautiful – DEREK

One comment

  1. Hi Derek. Thanks for these shots and thoughts. I love seeing you all. Max often makes me think he has been up to something; his eyes and slightly lowered head make him look so guilty. He is gorgeous.


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