PNR

Wikipedia says “Burn the ships”  means the ‘point of no return (PNR or PONR) is the point beyond which one must continue on one’s current course of action because turning back is dangerous, physically impossible or difficult.’  October of 2018 For King and Country released a song called Burn the Ships. You can listen to it here:

Jesus spoke about leaving things behind, forsaking people and things in Luke 14:25-27.

Many people were traveling with Jesus. He said to them, “If you come to me but will not leave your family, you cannot be my follower. You must love me more than your father, mother, wife, children, brothers, and sisters—even more than your own life! Whoever will not carry the cross that is given to them when they follow me cannot be my follower.”

Easy Reader Version

We must love Him MORE THAN anything and anyone else we know and love. In 1982 I wrote We Must Go On © Molly Lin Dutina 3-15-82

It doesn't matter.
We must go on.
If they won't come with us,
we must go on.
Pressing together
into the Kingdom.
We must go on.
Our Master Calls.

We can try to tell them,
but we must go on.
Can't let earth hold us back
we must go on.
The Father soon will speak,
Jesus will come.
It doesn't matter
we must go on.

If we feel hurt and loss
we must remember:
the Father works 
for their salvation
every hour of every day.
We must obey - we must go on.

Burn the ships, forsaking all others, follow Christ. It still applies today!

  

The Way

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

John 14:6 NIV

The Way © Molly Lin Dutina

May He who is the Way
Keep you in the Way
As you seek to find your way
Through this journey.

May He who is the Way
Guide you in His ways
Each and every day
As His pilgrim.

This is His holy Way
To walk in all His ways
Which are higher than our ways
Understatement.

May He who is the Way
Become your only way
As you conform to His ways
Abundant joy.

	

In the Gap of a Stone Wall

 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal;  but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

-Luke 12:19-21 New Revised Standard Version.

When I was a child my mother collected Betty Crocker coupons points from flour and box mixes. When we had saved enough points we could order things from the Betty Crocker catalog. Researching this article I realized that is likely where she ordered my baby spoon from!

When I was a young teen we had a Home Economics class. The teacher told us to to choose an everyday flatware pattern based upon our preference of design and how easy it would be to keep the pattern clean. My mother let me use her coupons to order this spoon.

Yep! I still have it. The design is great to get frozen hard gelato out of the container! 🙂

When we were in Ireland we were fascinated by the multitude of stone walls. The land is so rocky that those smart people used the stones to build with. Walking in a village one day the roadway was lined with stone walls on either side. I noticed something shining out of the wall. I pulled on it and much to my surprise was the item below!

At first glance what does it remind you of? I could not have been more shocked!

Side by side you can see they are not identical, but I was shocked to see the similarities! Was someone walking to work eating and finished their food? Decided to store the fork for later? Then forgot where it was? I will never know, but it became one of my found souvenirs. The tines are a little bent but I treasure it. I do not value it over my Lord. Unless He fills me and guides me with His Holy Spirit I am as useless as a fork stuck in the gaps of a stone wall.

Ireland 2011

We traveled to Ireland to celebrate my belated 60th birthday. When we went walking the first morning my ears immediately perked up to the lambs in the distance. They were crying and as they did it pierced my heart. I could not help but remember that I am under the care of the Great Shepherd, no matter what continent or island I am walking upon.

In the Old Testament God is called the Shepherd of His people.

The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures;
he leads me beside still waters
” Psalm 23:1-2

In the New Testament Jesus refers to Himself as the Good Shepherd in John 10:11.

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.”

As we meandered through the lanes of Glendalough I could tell by the cries we were getting closer and closer to the lamb. Then we turned a corner and there it was! Bob caught this tremendous photo of it on the hillside. There were other ewes and lambs around it.

r m dutina

Right after he snapped the photo I busted out the laughing as the lamb sneezed, and then rolled a bit down the hillside. What a sense of humor my God has!

Epiphany

Generally in today’s culture we think of epiphany as when someone has an enlightening moment. When it is capitalized Epiphany is referring to the Christian holiday with several meanings depending upon your denomination. Today is the celebration of The Epiphany. We do not currently attend church because of Covid 19. We are members of a non-denominational church. My roots are in the Episcopal church which I chose for Baptism and Confirmation at age 15. I learned much about church tradition and prayer in the Episcopal church. I learned Scripture by following the Daily Office Scriptures through the publication “Forward Day by Day.” It is still in print and available in paper copy or online.

The celebration of Jesus being presented to the world is recognized when the Wise Men (Magi) arrived to honor Him and bring Him gifts. This is understood as the Presentation of Christ to the Gentiles, God in the Flesh, Immanuel, God with us. In the Eastern churches this is commemoration of the Baptism of Jesus. When we were traveling and visited Arches National Park I was stunned by this image of the Wise Men, created by the sun and shadows.

I have printed this photo and it holds a prominent place in our home. whether it represents the Magi or the Trinity, I never want to forget the power of God with Us – right here, right now.

The Book of Common Prayer lists this prayer for The Epiphany. “O God, by the leading of a star You manifested Your only Son to the peoples of the earth: Lead us, who know You now by faith, to Your Presence, where we may see your glory face to face; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen

As far as the presentation of Jesus this passage sums it up well.

And there was a man in Jerusalem whose name was Simeon; and this man was righteous and devout, looking forward to the consolation of Israel; and the Holy Spirit was upon him. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. And he came by the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to carry out for Him the custom of the Law, then he took Him in his arms, and blessed God, and said, “Now, Lord, You are letting Your bond-servant depart in peace, According to Your word; For my eyes have seen Your salvation, Which You have prepared in the presence of all the peoples: A light for revelation for the Gentiles, And the glory of Your people Israel.”

Luke 2:25-32 NASB

Epiphany is celebrated and then the Episcopal church calendar counts celebrations for nine weeks called the First Sunday after the Epiphany, Second Sunday after the Epiphany, etc. right up to Ash Wednesday. May the arrival of the Revelation of Christ, His presentation to the world, enlighten our hearts and minds forever.

Now what?

Aren’t you tired of holding your breath? We are a world on edge. Global economy has nothing on global society right now. The Thanksgiving rush is all but over. The crowds have traveled and mingled among family members from far and wide. The sharing went beyond turkey and pies.

Experts are saying we are in for the worst winter in our history. I was appalled when they said 3,000 might die. Now we are counting deaths in the hundred thousands and climbing. Waiting for the other shoe to drop.

 
 Blanket © Molly Lin Dutina 2020  
  
 Magical morning
 White blanket covers the browns and grays
 of Autumn
 Speaks of winter to come
 Will there be 30 snowfalls since this
 Occurred on the 30th of November
 Sloppy wet snow
 Yet a welcome change
 During monotony of pandemic
  
 Next morning the snow was plastered
 On every branch and tree trunk
 Sky the color of snow
 Wind chills will be coldest
 We have felt since pandemic began
 
 Lord, what about the lonely
 The homeless and those stricken 
 With the virus
 Cover them, I pray, with Your Wings of mercy
 Show me how to help 
 In the midst of the awfulness 
    

Remember the Incomplete Hike?

Remember when I described trying to hike to Piedra Falls? We could not get all the way to the falls due to mud and steep grade? Dan did spot a sight for us though! Wheeling above us was a Golden Eagle. So much fun to travel with our best friends! I found a photo on the web.

Dan knows how to identify birds in flight much better than I do. We were delighted to catch a glimpse of a golden eagle in its natural habitat. I liked the web photo below, too. What a wonder!!

Golden Eagle -Aquila chrysaetos- in flight, landing at a bait place, Kainuu, Utajarvi, Nordfinnland, Finland

Bob was certain we saw another in the field one morning. As you can tell from my snapshot, the web photos are much better!

Or is it a big hawk at the corner of the fences?

Does the eagle soar at your command and build its nest on high?  It dwells on a cliff and stays there at night; a rocky crag is its stronghold.  From there it looks for food; its eyes detect it from afar.

Job 39:27-29 NIV

Two Persons This Grammy is SO Proud Of!

So we were traveling from Colorado to New Mexico and stopped for lunch at Rio Chama Coffee in Chama, New Mexico. My photo did not come out great, so this is their photo from the website.

There was a mother and daughter seated near us on the outdoor patio – but not too near of course! After looking at this white van in the parking lot for a while, I finally approached them and asked if that was their van. They said, “Yes.” I asked if it was okay with them if I took a photo of the logo on the window. I explained that our Grandgirls in Ohio both play volleyball. Unlikely they will ever meet for a match. As far as I know no Native American teams play in our girls’ tournaments!

So proud of our #6!
And our #32 Athlete! Photo by Robert Dutina
High flying Grandgirl Photo by Robert Dutina

Both girls are well grounded in their family, though you certainly cannot tell by looking at their flying and jumping skills! 😉

From the Truck

My sister drives a truck in Colorado. I wondered how she managed to get in it. I am taller than her and it was a stretch for me! Well, Bob took me for a ride in the truck and a CD was in the player. Cowboy and western classics. So when you view this video, that is what you hear in the background, and of course, the breeze!

And this tiny Aspen is next to Ponderosa Pines. I was startled to see what we in the east call “Spanish moss” hanging from the pines. I supposed Colorado might have another name for that, too! Any way there was moss hanging from some of the tree boughs. Not nearly as spectacular as in the southern US.

Worship the LORD in the splendor of his holiness; tremble before him, all the earth.

Psalm 96:9 NIV