Growing together in the Spirit of Jesus Christ...

"Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another - and all the more as you see the Day approaching." - Hebrews 10:25 NIV

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

sharing...

How about some popcorn?
photo by Erin Doyle

"Friendship marks a life even more deeply than love.
Love risks degenerating into obsession,
friendship is never anything but sharing."

- Elie Wiesel

Monday, June 29, 2015

joy and peace...


We all fall short of the glory of God. None of us are perfect.
If you are trying to do what the Lord says is right,
you understand when I say that,
we do the things that we do not want to do.
So what do we do and where do we turn?

Instead of relying on man's widely different
and opinionated wisdom
(as well as on our own understanding),
might I suggest the unchanging, infallible Word of God?

Digest His Word daily, pray unceasingly,
love unconditionally, forgive generously,
and trust Him completely.
Become less self-absorbed and think of others.
Grow to love the Lord with all of your heart,
your mind, your soul,
and love your neighbor as yourself.
Concentrate on the spiritual and less on the temporal.

Of course, this is all dependent on
realizing your sinful state,
wanting to overcome it and grow spiritually.
Remember, forgiveness and salvation
is yours through Jesus Christ, but,
as life changing as it is,
it is only the beginning.

The eternal rewards are joy and peace.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

sisters...

Little Women

"When you think yours is the only true path
you forever chain yourself
to judging others and narrow the vision of God.
The road to righteousness and arrogance
is a parallel road that can intersect
each other several times throughout a person's life.
It’s often hard to recognize one road from another.
What makes them different
is the road to righteousness
is paved with the love of humanity.
The road to arrogance
is paved with the love of self."

- Shannon L. Alder

Saturday, June 27, 2015

life from death...

life from death

Praise be to God...
He has provided everlasting
joy and peace through
His Son, Jesus Christ...
life from death.


"You are worthy, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they were created
and have their being."
- Revelation 4:11 NIV

Friday, June 26, 2015

pain and suffering...


"Do you not see how necessary
a world of pains and troubles is
to school an intelligence
and make it a soul?"

- John Keats

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Topaz...


Topaz is the "guard dog" at one of my favorite book stores...
The Olde Hickory Book Rack.
http://thebookrack.com/Lancaster?id=182

Getting rather old, Topaz spends
a lot of time "resting", usually with one eye open.
Didn't object one bit
to the placement of my coffee mug....
we have become good friends... :)


"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend.
Inside of a dog it's too dark to read."

- Groucho Marx

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

lust for destruction...

lust for destruction

"I am back in my beloved city.
The scene of desolation fills my eyes with tears.
At every step my distress and agitation increases.
I cannot recognize houses
or landmarks I once knew well.
Of the former inhabitants, there is no trace.
Everywhere there is a terrible emptiness."

- Khushwant Singh



"The more clearly we can focus our attention
on the wonders and realities
of the universe about us
the less taste we shall have
for the destruction of our race.
Wonder and humility are wholesome emotions,
and they do not exist side by side
with a lust for destruction."

- Rachel Carson

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

love and peace...


"The Simple Path:
Silence is Prayer
Prayer is Faith
Faith is Love
Love is Service
The Fruit of Service is Peace"

- Mother Teresa

Monday, June 22, 2015

desolate landscape...

desolate landscape

"Sometimes, when one is moving silently
through such an utterly desolate landscape,
an overwhelming hallucination
can make one feel that oneself,
as an individual human being,
is slowly being unraveled.
The surrounding space is so vast
that it becomes increasingly difficult
to keep a balanced grip on one's own being.
The mind swells out to fill the entire landscape,
becoming so diffuse in the process
that one loses the ability
to keep it fastened to the physical self."

- Haruki Murakami



Remember, God is with you always!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Father's Day...

Father's Day
What makes a good father is this...
a good family.

And remember always, Our Heavenly Father


“Father! —
to God himself we cannot give a holier name.”

- William Wordsworth

Saturday, June 20, 2015

lost in sin...

lost in sin

"It sometimes takes you a while
to realize that you are lost.
For the longest time, you can convince yourself
that you've just wandered off the path,
that you'll find your way back
to the trailhead any moment now.
Then night falls again and again,
and you still have no idea where you are,
and it's time to admit that you have
bewildered yourself so far off the path
that you don't even know
from which direction the sun rises anymore."

- Elizabeth Gilbert



"Forgiveness is the remission of sins.
For it is by this that what has been lost,
and was found,
is saved from being lost again."

- Augustine

Friday, June 19, 2015

family...

On the set of Little Women

"The same Jesus Who turned water into wine
can transform your home, your life,
your family, and your future.
He is still in the miracle-working business,
and His business is the business of transformation."

- Adrian Rodgers

Thursday, June 18, 2015

temptation...


The droplets of rain on the web
are dazzling, are they not?
It is very tempting to linger for awhile,
and even get a closer look... blinded,
as it were, by the sparkling display.


"A silly idea is current
that good people do not know
what temptation means.
This is an obvious lie.
Only those who try to resist temptation
know how strong it is...
A man who gives in to temptation
after five minutes
simply does not know
what it would have been like an hour later.
That is why bad people, in one sense,
know very little about badness.
They have lived a sheltered life
by always giving in."

- C.S. Lewis
(Mere Christianity)

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

spirituality...


spirituality

"There are two types of seeds in the mind:
those that create anger, fear,
frustration, jealousy, hatred
and those that create love,
compassion, equanimity and joy.
Spirituality is germination and sprouting
of the second group
and transforming the first group."

- Amit Ray

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Marmee...

Marmee

Erin getting her make-up
on the set of Little Women.


"A daughter is the happy memories of the past,
the joyful moments of the present,
and the hope and promise of the future."

- Author Unknown

Monday, June 15, 2015

music...

music

Every so often, one of the guys
from our church, a good friend,
gathers together some folks
for an old fashion jam session...
this one was yesterday. Great music...



"If I were not a physicist,
I would probably be a musician.
I often think in music.
I live my daydreams in music.
I see my life in terms of music."

- Albert Einstein

Sunday, June 14, 2015

great joy...

great joy

This is Frank. He sits behind me in church.
It is always a joy to greet him every Sunday
and exchange a few comments,
usually on photography.

Joy comes through worship,
love, praise, and trust
of our Lord and Savior
Jesus Christ.


"When we are powerless to do a thing,
it is a great joy that we can come
and step inside the ability of Jesus."

- Corrie ten Boom

Saturday, June 13, 2015

purpose...

purpose

My job is to use whatever talents I have been given,
to bring others a blessing and God the glory.


That is the purpose of SonRays and
all my original photographic work.

Friday, June 12, 2015

curiosity...

curiosity

"Curiosity killed the cat,” Fesgao remarked,
his dark eyes unreadable. Aly rolled her eyes.
Why did everyone say that to her?
'People always forget the rest
of the saying,' she complained.
'And satisfaction brought it back.'"
- Tamora Pierce

If you have never read your Bible,
or not for a long time,
let your curiosity peak...
you are a different person today
than you were yesterday.
God's Word and God Himself
has not changed but you have.
And pray that you get His message for you...
at this point (today) in your life.


Satisfaction will bring you back.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

ever-improving path...

ever-improving path



"Every day you may make progress.
Every step may be fruitful.
Yet there will stretch out before you
an ever-lengthening, ever-ascending,
ever-improving path.
You know you will never get
to the end of the journey.
But this, so far from discouraging,
only adds to the joy and glory of the climb."

- Winston Churchill

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

afraid of the light...

afraid of the light

"We can easily forgive a child
who is afraid of the dark;
the real tragedy of life is
when men are afraid of the light."

- Plato

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

adventure...

adventure

"God has placed it [joy] all around us.
It is in everything and anything we might experience.
We just have to have the courage
to turn against our habitual lifestyle
and engage in [following Him]."
- Jon Krakauer


Consider it an adventure of the Spirit.

Monday, June 8, 2015

sacred idleness...

sacred idleness

I like to ease into the day...
up early in the morning,
enjoy a mug of coffee,
with a cat or two on my lap.
Good quiet time to meditate and pray
before jumping into the daily routine.


"Work is not always required.
There is such a thing as sacred idleness."

- George MacDonald


Sunday, June 7, 2015

biggest miracle...

biggest miracle

"You will face your greatest opposition
when you are closest to your biggest miracle."

- Shannon L. Alder

Saturday, June 6, 2015

path unknown...

path unknown

"All around me, Lord of life,
My world is tumbling in.
There’s nothing sure and nothing safe
From gossip, greed and sin:

And yet, I know Thy pardon, Lord,
and thy forgiving power;
And through the storms of life each day
Thy truth sustains each hour.

Oh, help me climb above the storms’
That beat men down each day,
And glimpse a bit of heaven on earth
Along life’s burdened way.

Help me to know Thy nearness, Lord.
I cannot walk alone!
So let me feel Thy guiding hand
Through every path unknown.

I do not want to know the goal
Of what tomorrow bring;
One step, one hour, one gleam of light
To make my spirit sing.

And I shall walk through mist or rain
Through storm or summer’s day,
If I but know You’re by my side
Along life’s changing way."

- Pastor Clinton Meininger

Friday, June 5, 2015

fuel for the road...

fuel for the road
(photo by Lisa M. Tamanini Hooper)

Gasoline in the tank, coffee to drink...
but most importantly...
prayer before you start.


A DAILY MORNING PRAYER
Dear Heavenly Father,
I thank You for this day.
I thank You for my being able to awake once again, to see, and to hear this morning.
I'm blessed because You are a forgiving God and an understanding God.
You have done so much for me and You continue to bless me.
Please forgive me every day for anything I have done, said or thought that was not pleasing to You, and I ask now for Your forgiveness.
Please keep me safe from all danger and harm.
Help me to start this day with a new attitude and plenty of gratitude.
Let me make the best of each and every day to clear my mind so that I can hear from You.
Please broaden my mind that I can accept all things.
Let me not whine and whimper over things I have no control over.
Let me continue to see sin through Your eyes and acknowledge it as evil.
And when I sin, let me repent, and confess with my mouth my wrongdoing, and receive Your forgiveness.
And when this world closes in on me, let me remember the example of Jesus -- to slip away and find a quiet place to pray.
It is the best response when I'm pushed beyond my limits.
Continue to use me to do Your will.
Continue to bless me that I may be a blessing to others.
Keep me strong that I may help the weak.
Keep me uplifted that I may have words of encouragement for others.
I pray for those who are lost and can't find their way.
I pray for those who are misjudged and misunderstood.
I pray for those who don't know You intimately.
I pray for those who don't believe, and I thank you that You are in my heart and that I do believe and have true faith in You.
I believe that You change people and You can change all things.
I pray for all my sisters and brothers, and for each and every family member in their households.
I pray for peace, love, and joy in their homes that they are out of debt and all their needs are met.
I pray that every eye that reads this knows there is no problem, circumstance, or situation greater than You.
Every battle is in Your hands for You to fight.
I pray that these words be received into the hearts of every eye that sees them and every mouth that confesses them willingly.

This is my prayer...
and I pray in the name of Jesus Christ,
my Lord and Savior, Amen.”
- Rosenbloom Things

Thursday, June 4, 2015

abundant blessings...

abundant blessings

Went to yet another favorite place to eat...
this one is Amish run... Katie's Kitchen,
in the heart of Lancaster County, PA.
Every Wednesday they serve chicken potpie
(not meat pie with a crust)...
this is a Pennsylvania Dutch dish
made with noodles and is more of a stew
(we get it for lunch and then
eat something very light for dinner).
Here it is fantastic...
big chunks of tender chicken in a thicker gravy
(more stew than soup) with potatoes, celery,
and PA Dutch homemade noodles...
just the way we love it.
We get it with their excellent homemade coleslaw
and rolls with peanut butter smear
(more spreadable and I think contains marsh mellow cream).
Follow that up by splitting a piece of
their excellent homemade carrot cake
(best we ever had).
Later that same day... because of all those calories...
a trip to the gym and a workout... :)
Yes, of course, that is my mug in the photo too...
One other clarification...
we only eat half of our meal,
boxing up the rest to bring home
and have the next day... no overdoing it all at once... :)


We are so blessed...
so sing praises to the Lord, our God,
for everything He has done for us.



"Lord God and Giver of All Good Gifts,
we are grateful as we pause before this meal,
for all the blessings of life that You give to us.
Daily, we are fed with good things,
nourished by friendship and care,
feasted with forgiveness and understanding.
And so, mindful of Your continuous care,
we pause to be grateful
for the blessings of this table.
May Your presence be the “extra” taste
to this meal which we eat
in the name of Your Son, Jesus Christ.
Amen."

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

hummed of mystery...

hummed of mystery

"Once there were brook trout
in the streams in the mountains.
You could see them standing in the amber current
where the white edges of their fins
wimpled softly in the flow.
They smelled of moss in your hand.
Polished and muscular and torsional.
On their backs were vermiculate patterns
that were maps of the world in its becoming.
Maps and mazes.
Of a thing which could not be put back.
Not be made right again.
In the deep glens where they lived
all things were older than man
and they hummed of mystery."

- Cormac McCarthy

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

inner peace...

My photo... inner peace

"This wonderful image has both a simplicity
in its elements, water and a boat.
And yet it has a great strength of composition
of the lines and hues of the water,
the vertical of the mast,
the blue hull and red cloth
and the reflection..
all balanced to give the title, Inner Peace.
A good photo can teach me something,
I learned a lot by looking at this."

- Greg Gans



Never be in a hurry;
do everything quietly and in a calm spirit.
Do not lose your inner peace
for anything whatsoever,
even if your whole world seems upset.”

- St. Francis de Sales

Monday, June 1, 2015

applied talents...

applied talents

"Excuses excuse us from believing and knowing
that we can be something greater."

- Author Unknown



"The kingdom of God does not separate
the have and have not.
It separates the do and do not."

- Author Unknown