Saturday, April 29, 2017

M R Ducks

My mom used to make up funny little stories and sayings to make her grandchildren laugh. Invariably they made us all laugh too, and when we get together someone always brings up some of her stories, songs or sayings.

This is one that I think of often when I am out birding along the rivers and waterways in my travels.
This is what she used to say, "

"C M ducks?  M R'nt ducks! S M R. C M Wangs?"

You may have to read it over a time or two, but keep at it, you'll get it.

Anyway, this leads me to my photo theme today....ducks, ducks and more ducks.  Before I began birding with my son, Matt, I did not know how many different species of ducks there were.  Still don't know for sure, but I know there are a lot more than just  Mallards.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             
                                                Red-Breasted Merganser(female)

                                                                                    Red-Breasted Merganser(male)

I have often told my children that I know God has a sense of humor because of all the unusual looking animals He created. That is certainly true in the Merganser family, with their matching 'brush cuts'.'

                                                                         Wood Duck (male and female)

The Muscovy Duck is very large and wary. To me he looks almost prehistoric. 
Most found in North America are escapees from a domestic flock. In fact, we had two of them on the farm when I was growing up.

The male and female Wood Duck do not look at all alike. He is decked out in brilliant greens,oranges and browns for most of the year. The female is a unremarkable grayish brown with a white eye ring. This is true of most bird species, and I have often wondered
why that is. I like to think God created them this way to protect the females. The brighter the color, the more likely they can be spotted by their predators. So, the male, in a sense, protects the female with his bright colors. Just my personal theory.

I have shown you only a very few of the variety of ducks I have seen, but I would like to share something my birding travels have taught me.

"Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are yo not worth much more than they?"
Matthew 6:26

Our heavenly Father loves us more than the "birds of the air", and He will take care of us.
I never tire of seeing God's messages to us in the beautiful creation around us. I hope you 
take the time to look around you, and see God's hand in everything. This is His creation, made just for us.

A Peaceful Noise by Mary Reneau

A peaceful Noise?  No way can we imagine such a thing! Our whole effort seems to be directed to escaping the noise of everyday living. We go to the hills or we seek the seclusion of a quiet lake. There we can relax and be free from noise and strife. Noise and strife,the two words seem to go together. How then can there be a peaceful noise?

One long weekend recently, my husband Richard
and I,decided to seek peace and quiet in the hills. We loaded our backpacks with enough food for two days and packed into Wilderness Falls. After three hours of hard hiking and setting up camp near the falls, I was ready for a rest, but not Richard. Off he went with his fishing gear after the elusive trout.

I spread out my sleeping bag and settled down for a short nap. At first all I could hear was the roar of the falls, but slowly, I began to hear other sounds. There was a soft musical sound as a small stream made its way over the rocks to the river. A soft whistling of the wind in the trees was added to the blend. A peaceful noise? Yes, it was like a lullaby and soon I was asleep.

Afterwards, as I thought about it, I realized there was a lesson in this. There are times when we cannot take to the hills and the noise and strife seem to be getting the best of us. What are we to do? God tells us in His Word
“The work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness, quietness and assurance forever. And my people shall dwell…in quiet places.” (Isaiah 32:17, 18)

He doesn’t tell us to take to the hills. He wants us to listen to the undertones of His voice through His Word. He tells us,”…to study to be quiet.”(I Thess4:11) Yes, the noise and strife are still there, but we can be quiet inside and dwell continually in a quiet place. The blending of strife and God’s Word can be a peaceful noise.

Published in The Highway Evangelist,

A Christian Truckers magazine.