Every picture tells a story (11 Photo-Friday images)

The Lord God planted a garden in Eden in the east and put there the human he had formed. In the fertile land, the Lord God grew every beautiful tree with edible fruit, and also he grew the tree of life in the middle of the garden and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Genesis 2:8-9
– our daughter, Naomi

Sometimes, my “Photo Friday” collection works cohesively to tell one story; other times it is a random set of images I like; occasionally, the selection comprises the best pictures that didn’t make it into a post. This week, I guess the gallery represents a little of each.

Always, and I am blessed among grandparents for this, the images coming from Naomi in Miami are both entertaining and beautifully crafted. Art and story, the photographs never disappoint.

– “No pictures!!!!”

It helps of course that our daughter is happy and the children are so full to overflowing with life. There is an energy, a vibrancy, that comes through with this strong statement: “Life is good! This family is strong! We love one another! We are going to grab this goodness, this life, and this love with both hands!But there’s another strong statement too: “Why don’t you join us in this beautiful celebration?”

Possibly my favorite image from Miami is this, above, the children with their Connecticut mimi – Craig’s mom, Sue. Naomi posted a series of four photos on FaceBook, each one featuring Geoffrey dead set against having his picture taken! Classic.

Then there is David, reaching another Boy Scout milestone, Beks falling in love with a kitten, and the proverbial reptile closeup from Zoo Miami.

Summer heat in The Forest:

Here in Wake Forest we have been slammed with early summer heat. Contractors may be clearcutting at too many of the new developments, but here in Tyler Run, just a short walk from the town center, we can still see nothing but trees – thousands of them, and more than a gazillion leaves.

I have said this before, and will continue with a new slant and fresh photographic evidence every season of the year: “Wake Forest is an amazing community! We live in a lovely neighborhood, in an idyllic town, in a beautiful state. We feel blessed and grateful.”

Counterpoint:

Finally, interfacing with the insistent counterpoint of decline, we continue to do our very best for my mum and dad. It is not surprising, then, that I constantly return to the theme of the hymns they love when struggling to find something to say.

In addition to singing with dad, I typically sit at mum’s piano and play a few hymns when I go over to say goodnight. We use a handful of collections, including the Baptist Hymnbook I grew up with, the contemporary Glory to God Presbyterian hymnal, and Hymns for the Family of God. Last night I used a Billy Graham Crusade songbook mum had been playing earlier.

“Teach Me Thy Way” features a beautiful, haunting melody along with some lovely harmonization. But it is the words that rang so true, and with such poignant truth:

Long as my life shall last – teach me Thy way!
Where’er my lot be cast – teach me Thy way!
Until the race is run, until the journey’s done,
until the crown is won – Teach me Thy way!

Eyes open wide – ears too – DEREK

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