About the word Shekinah

The word Shekinah (shuh-kigh-nuh) means dwelling. It refers to the visible manifestation of the presence (or Shekinah Glory) of God. A luminous cloud. It is the very presence of God on earth. (see Holy Bible-Exodus 24:9-18)

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Swainson's Hawks

So, after church last Sunday, we needed to drive to the store in downtown Kuna to get a couple of things, and we spot this Swainson's hawk on top of a light pole by the intersection of Avalon and Swan Falls Road, right above a grassy field.  We pull a U-turn (something we often have to do when birding) and stop at the side of the road.
Shekinah Photography by Kathleen Bowman: Swainson's Hawks  Swainson's Hawk
Lo and behold, there are also two fledgling Swainson's on the ground, too.  One was obviously younger than the other.  They were making quite a ruckus and seemed to be finding something yummy to eat in the grass at the bottom of the light pole.  I really don't want to guess what it might have been, but I do know that they like insects and mice and the like.
Shekinah Photography by Kathleen Bowman: Swainson's Hawks  Swainson's Hawk
Meanwhile, we spot a dark morph Swainson's flying around overhead.  Now, keep in mind, this is all in downtown Kuna on a Sunday afternoon, cars whizzing by, sun blazing.  A bit of God's awesome creation showcased right before our eyes!
Shekinah Photography by Kathleen Bowman: Swainson's Hawks  Swainson's Hawk
I don't know exactly how long the fledglings stayed there in the grass, but the younger one didn't seem like he wanted to go anywhere.  The older one took off and flew toward a tree not too far from where we were parked.  His inexperience at tree landings resulted in him picking too thin of a branch and falling out of the tree.  He recovered from his fall and flew RIGHT over us!  I could have reached up and grabbed him! Kathleen ducked and didn't get a shot off.  I guess she was more concerned about the bird than getting a picture.
Shekinah Photography by Kathleen Bowman: Swainson's Hawks  Swainson's Hawk
After the near collision with our vehicle, he flew over and landed on the fence, right next to the road and about 10 yards from the younger fledgling.  It was all quite unexpected and quite a treat!  It just goes to show you that you never know when or where God will reveal His glory!
-  The Scribe

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Mountain Bluebird

Shekinah Photography by Kathleen Bowman: Birds  Mountain Bluebird
We were camping at Craters of the Moon National Park earlier this year (the end of April, I believe) when this picture was taken.  We had been hiking around on different trails, getting more and more tired as the day wore on.  Kathleen had been complaining that she wasn't getting any good bird shots and how stupid it all was.  Yea...she was tired!
 So I prayed that Almighty God would show my lovely albeit tired wife His glory.  Within minutes, this beautiful male Mountain Bluebird came by, posing within reach of her long zoom lens.  Kathleen practically bounced back to the truck!  Isn't that just like God?  We can start to get frustrated, tired, grumpy, whatever.  But then He pulls back the veil just a little and reveals His wondrous creativity and glory to us.  And we are changed as a result.
-  The Scribe

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Psalm 139:1-2

Shekinah Photography by Kathleen Bowman: Inspirational  Ps. 139:1-2 

The ironic thing about this wonderful inspirational picture and verse is that I was in a horrible spiritual place at the time it was taken.  And yet, through all my wanderings, God knew what I was doing, how detestable I was inside, exactly what was going through my mind...and He loved me anyways!

Oh how far God has brought me in the past year and a half!  If I were to sit in the same spot on top of Kuna Butte, it would be like a completely different person observing God's handiwork.  He has given me new eyes to see and new ears to hear.  He truly is a God of Wonders!  And even though He knows all about me, He still sent His Son to die for me.  Praise the Lord!
- The Scribe

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Prairie Shed

Shekinah Photography by Kathleen Bowman: Landscapes-Pictorial  Prairie Shed

We had taken a "photo excursion" over to the Little Camas Prairie near Fairfield, Idaho, to catch some of the Camas lilies blooming.  Driving around the area, we also spied a number of old buildings.  While Kathleen takes pictures, I will often sit in the truck and read.  I barely remember this building, but I certainly don't remember being all that impressed with the view.
Somehow, my wife is able to look at a run-down old building, frame it with the right amount of foreground, tweak the camera settings and come out with this absolutely charming scene - Award-winning, as a matter of fact!  (1st Place - 2010 Western Idaho Fair)  I believe God looks at us the same way.  What may appear to be an ordinary person on the outside becomes something wonderful when framed with the right background and tweaked by the work of the Holy Spirit.  Whether you want to accept it or not, God considers YOU Award-winning!
-  The Scribe

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Pittsburg Landing

Shekinah Photography by Kathleen Bowman: Black & White  Desert Trees
The cool air of the morning had begun to give way to the warmth of a sunny April day by the time we arrived at Pittsburg Landing.  This is one of the few places where you can drive right into Hell’s Canyon.  I was glad we were here in April and not in July or August, when the heat can be suffocating.  The high, thin clouds gave a surreal backdrop to this unique location.  We had just come through a mountain saddle, lush and green with trees and grass, only to drop down into a deep gash in the land highlighted by the Snake River coursing along the bottom.
The camera shutter was clicking away as we walked around the parking and picnic areas.  The tree that is the subject of this photo was nothing special, being so similar to all the other trees that lined the canyon bottom.  And yet, through my wife’s God-given talent, she transformed the ordinary into something of beauty.
This reminds me so much of what God does in our lives.  He takes the ordinary, the plain, and the seemingly useless things of our lives and turns them into works of art.  Only the Creator of the Universe could work such magic.  As we deal with the hurts, pains, and humiliation of our past, it can be difficult to see the potential for the wondrous which God recognizes as existing inside you and me.  After all, we are created in His image!  Every spring, God takes the dry, brown and dead plants and trees and paints amazingly brilliant colors with His heavenly palette.  If our God can transform the world every spring, then He certainly has the power to transform you and me.
Another story also comes to mind as I recall Pittsburg Landing: the story of a prince who didn’t want to accept the truth of who he was, so he ran away to a desert place, hoping to escape his own doubts, fears and failures.  Moses herded sheep for 40 years in a place similar to this.  The loneliness and solitude, I’m sure, must have been overpowering at times.  And yet, God used the time in Midian to mold and train Moses for his future, his destiny.  Maybe the burning bush was a tree like this one: ordinary and plain until it was useful to God for His purposes.  And the world has never been the same since!
Are you struggling in your own desert place?  Is your life ordinary, plain, nothing special?  Remember, the verdant green valleys are not far away.  Will you allow God to lead you there, to restore your soul, and to work magic in your heart?
-  The Scribe

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