Birds of the Bible – The Hidden Covenant – Part 2

WHEN DOES GOD MAKE A COVENANT?

 

Hosea 2:14 says, “Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak comfortably unto her” Did He not allure us and bring us from the wilderness of sin? He has been so kind to us that He still comforts us with His words, songs and above all with His presence and peace that passeth all understanding. What does this verse got to with the covenant? Hosea 2:16 has the answer to it. “And I will give her vineyards from there, and the valley of Achor for a door of hope: and she shall sing there, as in the days of her youth, and as in the day when she came up out of the land of Egypt.”

So? Does it not mean that we need to sing as in the days of our youth and as we sang when we came out of Egypt? Do we sing and worship the way we used to when we first met Jesus? Who would forget the day of salvation! The day when our hearts overflowed with the joy and peace that had never been experienced ever before! Do we have the same joy over the years?

Life has not been too kind for most of us. Battered and bruised we still are trying to come to terms with living a life that is pleasing unto God. During times of trouble, murmuring and self-pity takes our priority above singing and worshipping God. Look at the fowls of the air. Rain or shine they still keep singing like preset robots. No matter what kind of weather it is, the birds never stop their concert. Is God expecting this bird-kind of worship from us? Some of us may not know this bird-kinda worship. Here is how the birds sing.

Sombre Hummingbird (Aphantochroa cirrochloris) By Dario Sanches

Sombre Hummingbird (Aphantochroa cirrochloris) By Dario Sanches

 “Early Singer”

Dawn Chorus is part of every bird’s daily routine. They never venture out in search of food before they finish their dawn chorus. Do we dawn chorus everyday or just the morn-chorus every Sunday? Do we know why birds dawn chorus?

Since they use most of their energy in singing and flying, birds have to eat once in every ten minutes like the hummingbirds, to once in couple of hours like raptors, depending upon the species,. How much energy do we use in singing for God is another question which we may have to ponder a little late!  Coming back to where we left, birds do not eat from dusk to dawn, which can be called as an everyday hibernation period. If birds don’t eat well the previous evening, the chances of staying alive to deliver the dawn chorus the next morn is very minimal. So they need to eat well to stay fit to render their dawn chorus so as to advertise that they are still alive.We boast that we worship Jesus – The Life, the way and the truth. But, do we advertise every dawn that we are still alive? God says, “I love those who love me; And those who seek me early shall find me” Proverbs 8:17.

“Those who seek me early shall find me”, which means those who don’t seek early shall not find isn’t it? How early do we seek Him? The Israelites had to collect the dew wrapped manna before sunrise, else manna would melt and they may have to starve for the day. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God……  And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth.” John 1:1 & 14. The word of God is our daily manna. In other words, Jesus is our manna. Well, how many of us collect our daily manna before sunrise? Most of us are starving in spirit, is it because we seek God when the sun is over our heads? Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near:” Isaiah 55:6

God expects a dawn chorus from us and not a morn chorus. Each new morn would be a great blessing, when we kneel before God before our feet touches the ground. And it would be even more blessing when we open our mouth wide to praise and worship our eternal Father before we actually utter the first word for the day. Light is better seen in the dark. Remember, that Jesus is the Light. He expects us to seek Him early and not yearly. May be God will make a covenant with us if we too start singing not just the Sunday morn chorus but the dawn chorus like birds,.

“Awake, psaltery and harp: I myself will awake early.” Psalm 108:2

Spectacled Spiderhunter (Arachnothera flavigaster) by Peter Ericsson

Spectacled Spiderhunter (Arachnothera flavigaster) by Peter Ericsson

 “High voltage Singer”

Coming back to the question, “How much energy do we use in singing for God?” posted in the previous paragraph; it isn’t fair, yet, there is no other choice but to compare our singing with the singing of the birds. The song of a 5-gram Black-bellied Sunbird or that of a 45-gram Spectacled Spiderhunter can be heard as far as 300 to 400 meters. If they are as big as the Homo sapiens, their songs can be heard as far as 3 to 4 kilometers. If at all we sing, how loud do we sing for God? Paul and Silas sang and the earth shook inside the jail. But, these days, the singing inside a church doesn’t seem to even reach the roof of the church.

The secret lies in the noise that we make for God. All those who shouted for the Lord found immense favour from the Him.  The noise of Joshua and his men tore down the walls of Jericho. We should know the size of the walls of this mighty for, to comprehend the real power of praise. The Archeologists who excavated the burnt city, explain the walls of Jericho like this,

The fortifications of Jericho were massive.

These walls were structured on a three-tiered plan. The walls started with an earthen rampart, or embankment, which ran from ground level, upwards on an incline to a stone retaining wall. The stone retaining wall stood 12 to 15 feet in height (4-5m).

On top of the stone wall, stood another wall made of mud-bricks, 6 feet (2m) thick, and 20 to 26 feet (6-8m) high. Together, these two walls combined to form a fortification 32 to 41 feet high.

To put this into perspective, envision a 4 story tall building. Such was the height of the walls of Jericho.

On the other side of the double wall, the embankment continued to climb upwards. At the summit of the embankment, another mud-brick wall stood.

At their base, the walls of Jericho stood 46 feet (14m) above ground level outside the retaining wall. To the Israelites below, Jericho seemed impenetrable.

The illusion created by the two walls on the bottom, and the large wall at the crest of the embankment, seemed to stand nearly 10 stories in height from ground level! From this height, the Israelites must have seemed like ants, and surely were deemed no threat whatsoever.”

None of us would have faced an enemy as big as this fort of Jericho in all our life. In other words, our trials and tribulations would look much smaller compared to the walls of Jericho. If a mighty fort can buckle under the power of praise, will not our shouts of praise melt away our miseries and misfortunes? Sadly we don’t seem to use it to good effect: but birds do it with what little energy they have and that maybe the reason God chose to make covenant with them,

Maybe God will make a covenant with us if we too start singing loud like these little avian singers.

Shout to the Lord, all the earth. Psalm 100:1

Oriental Magpie-Robin (Copsychus saularis) by Nikhil Devasar

Oriental Magpie-Robin (Copsychus saularis) by Nikhil Devasar

 “LP (Long Play) Singer”

There are birds that sing for long durations. Birds like grasshopper warbler’s solo may last for over two minutes, nightjars may “chur” nonstop for eight minutes, a skylark may belt an unbroken heartfelt song for 18 minutes and an Oriental Magpie Robins would practice singing for more than half an hour to woo a potential female. To establish territories and to court females there is a bird called Dickcissels that would spend about 70 percent of the day singing while establishing territories and courting females. How long do we sing and worship every day to woo God’s presence. For God loves to dwell among our praises and the Bible says it too.

But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel. Psalm22:3

From dawn to dusk to summer to winter, every little movement of the planets and the billions of stars, the blooming of the flowers and the fruiting of the trees, every tiny creation under the sky are set in perfect motion each following different rhythmic patterns ensuing perfect harmony. There can be no better musician that God Himself. He orchestrates the whole universe like only He alone can. And that is the reason God assigned Moses to do something which he has never done before.

Before bidding goodbye for the last time to the people whom he led from Egypt through the wilderness, Moses was entrusted the job of teaching a song to the Israelites that God had personally composed.

Now therefore write ye this song for you, and teach it the children of Israel: put it in their mouths, that this song may be a witness for me against the children of Israel.

For when I shall have brought them into the land which I swore unto their fathers, that floweth with milk and honey; and they shall have eaten and filled themselves, and waxen fat; then will they turn unto other gods, and serve them, and provoke me, and break my covenant.

And it shall come to pass, when many evils and troubles are befallen them, that this song shall testify against them as a witness; for it shall not be forgotten out of the mouths of their seed: for I know their imagination which they go about, even now, before I have brought them into the land which I swore.

Moses therefore wrote this song the same day, and taught it the children of Israel.  Deuteronomy 31:19-22

Moses did teach God’s real big song immediately to his people and that can be found in Deuteronomy 32. How would our church respond if our pastor taught us that same big song? Faces frown when worship session extends beyond the stipulated time by a few minutes and if still continues for another few more minutes, worship turn to murmur. That is ‘cause most people find themselves so restless when it comes to spending that extra few minutes in the presence of God. We measure our praise and worship but we want immeasurable blessings from God.

Maybe God wants us to sing for longer durations like our flying friends so as to make a covenant with us…

I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.”Psalm 34:1

Northern Mockingbird (Mimus polyglottos) by Dan

Northern Mockingbird (Mimus polyglottos) by Dan

  “All Season Singer”

 “Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.

And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory” Isaiah 6:2-3

Since creation the Cherubs and Seraphs had been singing Holy, Holy, Holy, non-stop 24×7. I wonder how they don’t get bored singing the same song for thousands of years.  Most birds sing the same family song generation after generation after generation. The Northern Mocking birds sing all through the day and many a time can be heard even during the night. These slender birds never seem to get bored with singing. They also continue to add new sounds to their repertoires all through their lives. Don’t be surprised if someone says that a male Northern Mocking bird would learn more than 200 songs in its lifetime. That is their lifestyle, singing new songs all through the day and even during nights. A single male would sing longer than a male that has a family.

We prefer to worship only when life is on a rollercoaster. Do we sing and praise God at all times, during dark times in particular? May be that is the reason why God had not made a covenant with us yet is it? The Catholic Bible says that Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego worshipped right inside the fiery furnace that was set to heat seven times more than normal. And our God who loves to dwell among praises descended down and took the three young men for a stroll right in the middle of the furnace. Wear on the garment of Praise and worship, for it is fire-proof you know! Think of Paul and Silas, who were battered and bruised for no fault and was thrown into the prison. Undeterred, they preferred to sing and praise God at the darkest hour. That’s when God shook the foundation of the prison, broke their bondage and also of the other inmates of the prison. Wear the garment of Praise and Worship and you will find that no chain can bind you or jail you…Hundreds of years passed between these two significant incidents. Sandwiched between those two incidents is another great worshipper is King David, who knew the secret of Praise and Worship and that is the reason he says, I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.” Psalm 34:1

Maybe God is waiting to hear us sing at all times to make a covenant with us..

“In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Brown Thrasher (Toxostoma rufum) By Dan'sPix

Brown Thrasher (Toxostoma rufum) By Dan’sPix

  “New Song Singer”

Some birds sing just one song all through their lives. But there are birds that have vast repertoires of over thousands songs too… Brown thrasher can sing 2,000 songs while an Red-eyed Vireo had been recorded to have sung 20.000 songs in a day. Northern mocking birds often learn new songs. Sometimes it may end up learning about 200 new songs every year, during adulthood the male needs to improvise its singing capabilities by practicing for hours together to impress upon its probable mate. The male that sings the most complex songs are in demand among the eligible females. Most female prefer to mate with the male which sings the most complex songs since, she thinks that the male that sings the most complex songs is best suited to raise and look after the family.

Male Black-throated blue warblers that had bred and reproduced successfully would sing to its offspring to influence their vocal development. If young birds fail to learn songs from their fathers, they would starve to death. Bird vocalization is absolutely necessary for the young birds to grow into a successful adult.

How many parents take time to teach new songs to their children? How many parents feel that children should go to Sunday school regularly?  Raising a child is not about feeding clothing and sheltering alone . It is about teaching them survival traits which would help them rise into a successful parent in future.  Those survival traits include worship, prayer, tithing, knowledge in the word of God and so on. Do we teach them to sing for God? If we as parents fail to teach them the power of worship and how it can change any bad situation, who else would? We don’t have to be musically trained to teach them new songs. The least could be family prayer both at dawn and dusk. Wherein we have the habit of singing hymns and choruses that would help parents expose their children to new songs. If a father smokes in front of his children, he is sure to see one of them smoke in the near future. And if a mother gossips in front of her child, she would surely end up seeing her child gossip too.  Do we want to define machismo and femininity by smoking and gossiping? What we are is what our children are going to be. The ones who learn to worship God singing new songs even in times of trouble are the ones who are capable of overcoming any situation, bad or worse.

God doesn’t expect us to sing the same song over and over again; we have a better choice to sing new songs every day. Our God says, “Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.” Isaiah 43:19. David knew the secret of touching God’s heart. Maybe that is the reason he made it a point to sing new songs for God. We may not sing thousands of song, do but do we have the habit of singing a few new songs for God? Is that the reason why God chose to make a covenant with birds instead?

“O sing unto the Lord a new song: sing unto the Lord, all the earth.” Psalm 96:1

Indian Scimitar Babbler (Pomatorhinus horsfieldii) ©WikiC

Indian Scimitar Babbler (Pomatorhinus horsfieldii) ©WikiC

 “Corporate Singer”

Birds neither have a worship leader nor a worship team to lead them in singing. They know God’s plan in their lives. They also know that God had created them to sing and so they sing. No matter what, rain or shine, they never cease to sing. They sing on time, the time that God had set for each one of them. They do not overlap their singing instead they share space even in their singing. Homo Sapiens love to talk, talk and talk 24×7. We talk about our family and finance, sports and corruption, love and sex, marriage and divorce. At the end of the day most of all that we spoke through the day is found to be just rubbish. But birds always talk about global warming, climate change and natural disaster.

Duetting among birds not only help them stay close to each other but also to locate each other in dense foliage. Initially this behavior was thought be a battle of sexes, where duetting behavior reflects the struggle between bonding pair. But recent studies show that duetting is not about singing romantic duets but it is all about aggressive audio warfare, where it bonds a potential pair in defending territorial invasion by other bonding pairs.

Jesus said, For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them” Mathew 18:20. When two are three gather in His name do they fill the air with “gossip” or “worship?”

 This people have I formed for myself; they shall shew forth my praise.” Isaiah 43:21

God created man to just worship. But, we do every other thing except worshipping. Worse still, man’s priorities shifted from worshipping the One to be worshipped to worshipping the worship or the worship leader or the choir or the musician. Most churches feel that it’s the talent of the worship leader or the worship team or the selection of songs that is crucial in pulling off a successful worship session. It is time for us to switch on the search lights and check on how we worship God. Do we worship God in truth and in spirit? Don’t we prefer this worship leader than that worship leader? Don’t we feel that this worship team is better than the other worship team? Did we not say that the presence of God is mightier when that guy sings or plays the keyboard? Are we spiritual Christians or emotional Christians? Most believers treat church as a concert hall rather than a place of worship. That must be the reason why they prefer to listen to worship rather than to participate in worship. The reason they give, “I don’t have a good voice” God doesn’t look for a good voice but for a joyful noise.

“Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all the earth: make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise.” Psalm 98:4

Pale-yellow Robin (Tregellasia capito) in nest by Ian

Pale-yellow Robin (Tregellasia capito) in nest by Ian

 “Silent Singer”

Most birds do not sing all through the day. As told earlier, they have a set time for their everyday concert, what researchers call as “Bird clock”. They know when to sing and when to stay silent. Do we know when to stay still and when to worship?  The Bible calls us as the “Royal Priesthood”. Bible explains the robe of the Royal Priest like this.

“Make the robe of the ephod entirely of blue cloth,

with an opening for the head in its center. There shall be a woven edge like a collar around this opening, so that it will not tear.

Make pomegranates of blue, purple and scarlet yarn around the hem of the robe, with gold bells between them. 

The gold bells and the pomegranates are to alternate around the hem of the robe.” Exodus 28:31-34

The gold bells and the pomegranates that alternate around the hem of the robe show us how to live the life of a true worshipper. Bells make noise and pomegranates stay quite. In other words the alternate arrangement of gold bells and pomegranates seems to say that we need to know when to make a joyful noise and when to keep quite. Music is also an amalgamation of notes and pause. In other words music is not complete without pause. The birds know it well and help them sync so well with the bird clock.  A royal priest also ought to know when to make noise and when to give a pause.

“And it shall be upon Aaron to minister: and his sound shall be heard when he goeth in unto the holy place before the Lord, and when he cometh out, that he die not.” Exodus 28:35

The sound of the bell should keep ringing while the priest is inside the holy place before the Lord. The sounds of the bells would die only if God slays the priest only after having found him to have sinned. This only substantiates the fact that we, the so-called royal priesthood need to make a joyful noise in His presence and if we don’t, it sounds like we are dead. We need to remember that, The dead praise not the LORD, neither any that go down into silence.” Psalm 115:17.

Of all the languages, silence is the most powerful language on the face of the earthNow that we know when to make noise, we also need to know when to pause too. The life of Jesus itself shows us importance of being still in silence. On more than one occasion Jesus did show us what silence can do. Jesus echoed the language of silence in the most profound mode on the cross of Calvary. If not for His silence, we would still be waiting for redemption. It was His silence that broke the shackles of sin to set us free from the clutches of satan. How silent are we in His presence? Do we take time to listen to Him or just go blah-blah in His presence?

Birds know when to sing their mating songs and when not to. They have a specific season for mating; unlike human beings whose birthday fall on every single day from January through December and that includes February 29th, the leap day too. Romancing for birds is seasonal, purposeful and decisive: whereas for Homo sapiens, it is more of lust than of commitment, a commitment to God’s eternal plans, per se. There is a season for everything. Do we adhere to God’s timing? In His time He makes all things beautiful and not in our time. Birds must be intrinsic to God’s time. That must be the reason for God to make a covenant with these feathered singers isn’t it?

a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak,”  Ecclesiastes 3:7

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Birds of the Bible – The Hidden Covenant ~ by AJ Mithra

(Written by A J – layout, photos, and sounds added by Lee)

See:

Birds of the Bible – The Hidden Covenant – Intro

Birds of the Bible – The Hidden Covenant – Part 3

Birds of the Bible

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Yours in YESHUA,

a j mithra

Please visit us at:

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Birds of the Bible – The Hidden Covenant – Intro

Eurasian Collared Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) by Dan

Eurasian Collared Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) by Dan

(The first of a three part article.)


The Hidden Covenant

“Berith” the Hebrew word for covenant means “a coming together” in English, appears 280 times in the Bible. Covenants may include a treaty, agreement, mutual understanding, pact, deal, alliance, pledge, promise and so on. Marriage is a covenant between two individuals. Treaty is a covenant between two states or nations. The Last will that is written by an ailing individual to pass on his /her property to his surviving spouse or children is also a covenant. We are bound by so many covenants in our everyday life. Housing and vehicle loans, debit and credit cards, driving license are all covenants.

Though each one of us is bound by a direct or an indirect covenant with an individual, an organization or a government, we long for God to make a covenant with us. Bible shows us so many covenants between individuals, kings and between leaders of a group of men; but the covenants that God made with individuals and a group of individuals are the ones which were widely meditated, preached and written about.

Somewhere down the line, over centuries after centuries after centuries, there is one covenant that was either unintentionally hopped or deliberately overlooked. This covenant may look irrelevant and immaterial, trivial and trifling; but an in-depth study of this covenant would unveil a big secret that God has for the peace and tranquility of the whole universe.

That “Berith – Covenant” is as follows…

“And in that day will I make a covenant for them with the beasts of the field, and with the fowls of heaven, and with the creeping things of the ground: and I will break the bow and the sword and the battle out of the earth, and will make them to lie down safely.” Hosea 2:18

When does God make a covenant with them?

Why would God want to make a covenant with the beasts of the field, with the fowls of the air and with the creeping things of the ground?

How could a covenant with wildlife break the bow and the sword and the battle out of the earth?

Is it possible for a covenant with wildlife, help us lie down safely?

These were the queries that rose from my mind when I read the above verse from Hosea. While I was pondering over this attention-grabbing episode of God, He slowly unraveled the crucial presence of wildlife, not just for food and clothing but for the survival of mankind as a whole.

Sitting on the balcony one morning, trying hard to gulp those recent unpleasant happenings along with her morning coffee, watching a squirrel jump from a coconut tree to a custard apple tree like a seasoned pro, my wife probed, “God could have created us like these animals. Why should we suffer like this? See how they enjoy life” Just as she was lamenting, I felt God say, “They are sinless, whereas man was born of sin”

I thought this conversation not only opened avenues of thought but also made sense on this new covenant that God uncovered a few days back. Ever since God clothed Adam and Eve with animal skin and accepted the sacrifice of Abel. God did express how imperative animals and birds are in His creation. Abel knew that there is no redemption without shedding blood. So he chose from the best among wildlife and sacrificed. And we all know how God accepted his sacrifice and rejected the sacrifice of Cain.

Northern Raven (Corvus corax) by Ray

Northern Raven (Corvus corax) by Ray

Noah also had to seek the help of birds to get the weather report after the flood isn’t it? And God made a covenant with Noah but not before he sacrificed from every clean beast and from every clean animal. Remember, if not for the beasts and birds God wouldn’t have placed the beautiful rainbow in the sky. If not for rainbow, we wouldn’t have studied prism in school.

God also taught Moses and Aaron, His appointed servants. about how to sacrifice, when to sacrifice and what to sacrifice. God gave them a list of clean animals and birds for sacrifice. In fact birds were sacrificed when Jesus was brought to the temple of Jerusalem after the days of purification.

“And when eight days were accomplished for the circumcising of the child, his name was called Jesus, which was so named of the angel before he was conceived in the womb.

And when the days of her purification according to the law of Moses were accomplished, they brought him to Jerusalem, to present him to the Lord;

(As it is written in the law of the Lord, Every male that openeth the womb shall be called holy to the Lord;)

And to offer a sacrifice according to that which is said in the law of the Lord, A pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.” Luke 2:21-24

The birds seem to have handed over the entry ticket for the Creator when He entered the temple of Jerusalem for the first time is His life on earth.

So? Does it mean that only clean beasts and birds are sinless? I thought.  If it is so, why should God send an unclean raven to feed Prophet Elijah? I wondered. Anyway, there should be a strong central theme for God to make a covenant with the beasts and the birds instead of man, whom He created in His own image.

Birds of the Bible – The Hidden Covenant ~ by A J Mithra

See:

Birds of the Bible – The Hidden Covenant – Part 2

Birds of the Bible – The Hidden Covenant – Part 3

Birds of the Bible

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Yours in YESHUA,

a j mithra

Please visit us at:

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Nuggets Plus – Honey and Frogs by A J Mithra

Honey Bee from AJ

Honey Bee from AJ

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Nuggets Plus

Nuggets Plus

It takes

one ounce of honey

to fuel a honey bee’s flight

around the world!

The name of the Lord is

sweeter than honey.

We have been eating

His words for so long…

But,

How much had it fuelled us

and how far have we travelled

For God’s sake?

How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth! (Psalm 119:103)

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Male Darwin Frog ©©

Male Darwin Frog ©©

Male Darwin Frog (Rhinoderma darwinii)

takes its mate’s eggs in its mouth

 when they show signs of life

and they stay there

till they emerge as fully grown froglets..

Life and death is in our mouth…

How do we use it?

Have a blessed day!

Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof. (Proverbs 18:21)

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Archey’s Frog by Ian Bell from AJ

Archey’s Frog by Ian Bell from AJ

A male Archey’s frog of New Zealand

carries its young one in its back

until they are mature enough

to survive on their own!

But,

We have a God who keeps us

In His eyes..

Not until we turn adults

But, all through our lives..

Have a blessed day!

Keep me as the apple of the eye, hide me under the shadow of thy wings, (Psalm 17:8)

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See More:

Nuggets Plus

A J Mithra’s Articles

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Nuggets Plus – Prairie Dogs and Deer

Praire Dog - National Zoo ©WikiC

Praire Dog – National Zoo ©WikiC

Nuggets Plus – Prairie Dogs and Deer by A J Mithra

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Nuggets Plus

Nuggets Plus

Prairie Dogs – Squirrel like rodents build listening room in its underground tunnel to listen for danger before going outskirts…

Do we have the habit of listening to God’s voice and direction before we go out?

Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee. (Psalms 143:8 KJV)

Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. (Psalms 119:105 KJV)

Roe Deer (Capreolus capreolus) ©WikiC

Roe Deer (Capreolus capreolus) ©WikiC

Deer prefer to live in its established territory for life and even prefers to starve than to leave its territory!

God promised to give us feet of deer and place us high above the rock ..

But do we live in His territory?

He made my feet like the feet of a deer and set me secure on the heights. (2 Samuel 22:34 ESV)

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(Thoughts by a j mithra, layout by Lee and verses by God)

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Nuggets Plus

AJMithra

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The Rock Ptarmigan – The Crown

Rock Ptarmigan (Lagopus muta) by Daves BirdingPix

Rock Ptarmigan (Lagopus muta) by Daves BirdingPix

The Rock Ptarmigan – The Crown ~ by a j mithra

The Rock Ptarmigan is seasonally camouflaged; its feathers moult from white in winter to brown in spring or summer. The breeding male has greyish upper parts with white wings and under parts. In winter, its plumage becomes completely white except for the black tail. It can be distinguished from the winter Willow Ptarmigan (Willow Ptarmigan in North America) by habitat—the Rock Ptarmigan prefers higher elevations and more barren habitat; it is also smaller with a more delicate bill.

Willow Ptarmigan (Lagopus lagopus) ©USFWS

Willow Ptarmigan (Lagopus lagopus) ©USFWS

A bird that is smaller and with more delicate bill prefers higher elevation…

Interesting isn’t it?

It is when we become smaller, subdued and humble that God takes us to higher elevation.

He brought me up also out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. (Psalm 40:2)

The higher elevation maybe more barren and it may have delicate bills but still this bird prefers higher elevation…

Most of us judge ourselves by what we have, failing to understand that in our weakness

“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” (2 Corinthians 12:9)

His strength is complete and that is the reason He chooses the weak.
So that His name shall be glorified

  • Not in strength but in weakness’
  • Not in abundance but in want..
  • Not through the wise but through the fools.

But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God has chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; (1 Corinthians 1:27)

Rock Ptarmigan (Lagopus Muta) in winter plumage ©WikiC

Rock Ptarmigan (Lagopus Muta) in winter plumage ©WikiC

The small population living on Franz Josef Land in the Russian High Arctic, overwinter during the polar night, and survives by feeding on rich vegetation on and underneath high cliffs where seabird colonies are located in summer. The Rock Ptarmigan feeds primarily on birch and willow buds and catkins when available. It will also eat various seeds, leaves, flowers and berries of other plant species. Insects are eaten by the developing young.

Apart from the comb, the male Rock Ptarmigan has no ornaments or displays that are typical for grouses in temperate regions. Studies on other grouses have shown that much variation in comb size and colour exists
between the species, and that the comb is used in courtship display and aggressive interactions between males.

This reminds us of how the colorful garment of Jesus was stripped, torn into twelve pieces and shared among the soldiers right under the cross, even as the Rock was grieving in pain for our sins..

Jesus did not have any ornaments or displays on the cross except the crown of thorns.

He bore not the crown of thorns but bore the brunt of mockery to give us the crown of eternal life isn’t it?

And after twisting together a crown of thorns, they put it on His head, and a reed in His right hand; and they knelt down before Him and mocked Him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” (Matthew 27:29)

Rock Ptarmigan (Lagopus Muta) ©Wiki

Rock Ptarmigan (Lagopus Muta) ©Wiki

Many studies have shown that there is a strong correlation between the comb size and the level of testosterone in males; one report from 1981 showed that the amount of testosterone is correlated to aggressiveness against other males. The male’s comb has been the focus of studies regarding sexual selection. Studies of a population of male Rock Ptarmigans in Scarpa Lake, Nunavut, have shown that during the first year, mating success among males was influenced by comb size and condition, and bigamous males had larger combs than monogamous males. The correlation to size disappeared after the first year, but the correlation to comb
condition remained.

This is consistent with another study of the same population of L. muta that showed that mating success overall is correlated to comb condition. Exceptions were first-time breeders, in which the size of the comb influenced mating success. The mating success is correlated to comb condition..

There is a strong correlation between the life we live for Christ and the crown that God has kept for us.

  • We need to receive a crown not just to show off but to live eternally with the King..
  • Our King wore a crown of thorns so that His Queen, the Church shall wear the Crown of Life and reign with Him forever and ever.

What kind of a crown would God give us?

Here are a those five crowns that God had kept for us..

God has got an “IMPERISHABLE CROWN” for those who run a faithful, unselfish race, crucifying all their earthly desires and focusing on just the cross.

Did Jesus asked us to carry our cross for this?

Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. (1 Corinthians 9:24-25)

“THE CROWN OF JOY” is there for those who bring souls into His kingdom. Working towards standing as a living testimony for others to follow Christ through our selfless Christ-like lifestyle…

Are we working selflessly to bring souls to His kingdom?

For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing? Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming? For ye are our glory and joy. (1 Thessalonians 2:19-20)

Here is another crown that awaits us, that is the “THE CROWN OF RIGHTEOUSNESS”

Are you waiting anxiously for the Lord? In that case you will surely receive this crown, when Jesus, the King returns.

  • How are we waiting?
  • Patiently?
  • Diligently?
  • Anxiously?

Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing. (2 Timothy 4:8)

Rock Ptarmigan (Lagopus Muta) ©WikiC mother and chick

Rock Ptarmigan (Lagopus Muta) ©WikiC mother and chick

There is another crown for us, “THE CROWN OF LIFE”.

It is for those who endure temptations, trials, pain and agony for the sake of the Lord.

  • People around you may live a life of luxury and abundance.
  • But we are called to overcome earthly desires.
  • Do we deserve this crown?

Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him. (James 1:12)

This crown, “THR CROWN OF GLORY” has a long price tag.

Pay and receive. Here is the bill..

The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed:
Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;
Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being examples to the flock.
And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away. (1 Peter 5:1-4)

Now, it’s time for us to switch on our search lights to see what kind of crown do we deserve..

Have a blessed day!
Yours in YESHUA,
a j mithra

Please visit us at:
CrossTree

ajmithra21

The Scaled Quail – The Cover Seeker

Scaled Quail (Callipepla squamata) ©WikiC

Scaled Quail (Callipepla squamata) ©WikiC

The Scaled Quail – The Cover Seeker ~ by ajmithra

The Scaled Quail (Callipepla squamata), also commonly called Blue Quail or Cottontop, is a species of the New World quail family. It is a bluish gray bird found in the arid regions of the Southwestern United States
to Central Mexico.

These birds seek for four different covers. They are as follows :

Feeding cover: Scaled Quail use grass clumps and shrubs for cover while feeding. In one study they were frequently seen crossing 82 to 165 feet (25–50 m) of bare ground. When disturbed, Scaled Quail hid in snakeweed (Gutierrezia spp.) or in grass clumps. In June and July foraging occurs on open grasslands which are not used at other times.

We have Jesus, our Good Shepherd, who makes us lie down beside still waters. But, times are fast approaching where the church may be stopped from feeding on the word of God and the church may have to hide during the times of tribulation..

Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD. Amos 8:11

Scaled Quail (Callipepla squamata) by DavesBirdingPix

Scaled Quail (Callipepla squamata) by DavesBirdingPix

Loafing cover: Scaled Quail coveys occupy loafing or resting cover after early morning feeding periods. Scaled Quail occupy desert grassland or desert scrub with a minimum of one loafing covert per approximately 70 acres (28 ha). In northwestern Texas, loafing coverts were characterized by:

  1. overhead woody cover,
  2. lateral screening cover,
  3. a central area with bare soil, and
  4. one or more paths through the lateral cover.

Covert heights ranged from 1.6 to 5.9 feet (0.5–1.8 m) and 2.6 to 6.9 feet (0.8–2.1 m) in diameter. Cholla formed all or part of the overhead cover of 85% of coverts, even though they were dominant
at only 12% of the study locations. In areas where Scaled Quail occur without cholla, woody species such as wolfberry (Lycium spp.) and mesquite are important for overhead cover.

In Oklahoma pinyon-juniper habitats, Scaled Quail use the shade of tree cholla (Cylindropuntia imbricata) and human-made structures. In Arizona, Scaled Quail occupied wolfberry and mesquite 1.7 to 5 feet (0.5–1.5 m) tall for loafing cover. This overhead cover provides midday shade, but is open at the base to allow easy escape from predators. In Oklahoma, winter home ranges always contained skunkbush sumac, tree cholla, or human-made structures providing overhead cover.

The highlight during the migration of millions of Israelites across the wilderness for forty years is the overhead cover that God gave them in the form of Pillar of clouds during the day and Pillar of fire during the night. Our God is the same yesterday, today and forever. There is protection for everyone for all seasons..

And there shall be a tabernacle for a shadow in the daytime from the heat, and for a place of refuge, and for a covert from storm and from rain. Isaiah 4:6

Mountain-Mahogany (Cercocarpus montanus) Cover for Scaled Quail ©WikiC

Mountain-Mahogany (Cercocarpus montanus) Cover for Scaled Quail ©WikiC

Night-roosting cover: Scaled Quail roosts were observed in yucca (Yucca angustifolia), tree cholla, and true mountain-mahogany (Cercocarpus montanus) – yucca-fragrant sumac (Rhus aromatica) vegetation types. The height of vegetation used for night roosts was less than 1.6 feet (0.5 m).

No matter wherever you are and whatever situation you are in, just remember what king David said..,

If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me. Psalm 139: 8-10

Even during the darkest hour, as we stumble, confused and seeking direction, His protection and direction never seizes. He not only keeps His eyes on us, but also keeps us as the apple of His eyes. His light shall shine upon us to direct our path.

If I say, Surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light about me. Yea, the darkness hideth not from thee; but the night shineth as the day: the darkness and the light are both alike to thee.” Psalm 139:11-12

Catclaw Acacia (Acacia greggii) Cover for Scaled Quail ©WikiC

Catclaw Acacia (Acacia greggii) Cover for Scaled Quail ©WikiC

Nesting cover: In March or April winter coveys spread out into areas with less cover. This use of areas with less cover coincides with a seasonal decrease in the number of raptors in the same area.

Scaled Quail nests are constructed under tufts of grasses, and are sheltered by sagebrush (Artemisia spp.), creosotebush (Larrea tridentata), mesquite, catclaw acacia (Acacia greggii), cactus, or yucca; under
dead Russian-thistle (Salsola kali), mixed forbs, or soapweed yucca; or sheltered in old machinery or other human-made debris.

In Oklahoma, 66% of nests were in one of four situations:

  1. dead Russian-thistle,
  2. machinery and junk,
  3. mixed forbs, and
  4. soapweed yucca.

In New Mexico, ordination of breeding birds and vegetative microhabitats indicated that Scaled Quail were associated with increased levels of patchiness and increased cover of mesquite and cactus.

Birds build nests in different places, sometimes in the most unusual place. But still, the chicks prefer the protection under the wings of its parents.

Where do we seek for protection?

As an eagle stirreth up her nest, fluttereth over her young, spreadeth abroad her wings, taketh them, beareth them on her wings: Deuteronomy 32:11

He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler. Psalm 91:4

The most secure cover for our lives does not come from our million dollars life insurance policies but from assurance that God has gave us through His bloodshed, suffering and death on the cross of Calvary.

Is your Life insured in Christ?

Have a blessed day!

Yours in YESHUA,
a j mithra

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Check out his articles here at  A J Mithra and his Nuggets Pluss

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Nuggets Plus ~ Rooster – Stiff neck..?

Rooster from the Philippines ©WikiC

Rooster from the Philippines ©WikiC

Rooster – Stiff neck..?

Nuggets Plus

Nuggets Plus

Roosters need to fully extend its neck..
Or else, they would never
be able to crow..

Did God call those
who were not worshipping
as the stiff-necked I wonder..

Well, if we were crowing roosters,
we would be dawn worshippers for God,
and would be waking up those who are asleep
through our crowing, I mean singing…

By the way are we stiff-necked?

Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye. (Acts 7:51)

Regards,
Yours in YESHUA,
a j mithra

Please visit us at:

Crosstree

ajmithra21

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Woodpeckers – The Core Species..

Black-backed Woodpecker (Picoides arcticus) by Daves BirdingPix

Black-backed Woodpecker (Picoides arcticus) by Daves BirdingPix

Woodpeckers – The Core Species.. ~ by ajmithra

Woodpeckers are often termed “core species”
because their presence
is a fundamental requirement to the existence of a wide range of other birds.
Woodpeckers drill new nest holes each year,
and thus many old nest cavities
are available for a entire suite
of hole-nesting species.
Many smaller species
of North American swallow
are dependent on woodpecker holes,
as are virtually all the small owls,
various bluebirds,
and a huge array of small birds like
wrens and chickadees
that use them advantageously.
Isaac dug wells
And the others took it..
He didn’t grumble
but, dug more wells..
And God blessed him even
In times of famine..

Do all things without murmurings and disputings: That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; (Philippians 12:14,15)

Yours in YESHUA,
a j mithra

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Woodpeckers belong to the Picidae – Woodpeckers.

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Australian Pelicans – The Corporate Feeders..

Australian Pelican (Pelecanus conspicillatus) by Ian at Birdway

Australian Pelican (Pelecanus conspicillatus) by Ian at Birdway

Australian Pelicans – The Corporate Feeders.. ~ by ajmithra

Australian Pelicans feed together in large numbers..
They herd fishes to shallow waters,
and surround them in decreasing circles..

  • This corporate fishing helps them gather more food..
  • Israelites gathered Manna together…

How many of us believe in Corporate feeding of the Word of God?

  • Corporate worship helped Jesophat overcome his enemies.
  • God descends when we congregate In His mighty name..
  • When God descends satan flees…

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. (Mathew 18:20)

Yours in YESHUA,
a j mithra

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Pelicans belong to the Pelecanidae – Pelicans Family. They are also a Bird of the Bible.

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Oriental White-eye – The Grace Seeker..

Oriental White-eye (Zosterops palpebrosus) ©WikiC

Oriental White-eye (Zosterops palpebrosus) ©WikiC

Oriental White-eye – The Grace Seeker.. ~ by a j mithra

The Oriental White-eye (Zosterops palpebrosus) is a small passerine bird in the white-eye family.

It is a resident breeder in open woodland in tropical Asia, east from the Indian Subcontinent to Southeast Asia, extending to Indonesia and Malaysia. They forage in small groups, feeding on nectar and small insects.

They are easily identified by the distinctive white eye-ring and overall yellowish upperparts. Several populations of this widespread species are named subspecies and some have distinctive variations in the extent and shades of yellows in their plumage.

This bird is small (about 8–9 cm long) with yellowish olive upper parts, a white eye ring, yellow throat and vent. The belly is whitish grey but may have yellow in some subspecies. The sexes look similar.

If we are called Christians, we need to look like Christ..

  • But, do we look like Christ or do people see Christ in us and through us?

We have just stepped into a new year, where many of us would have taken resolutions to eat less, quit smoking, stop watching porn stuff and maybe a resolution to stop taking resolutions…

  • But have we ever taken a resolution to walk like Christ, to talk like Christ and be like Christ?

People around us are watching us and expecting us to show Christ. You know?

Now is the time to take a resolution to be like Christ isn’t it?

For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. (Galatians 3:27)

Japanese White-eye (Zosterops japonicus) by W Kwong

Japanese White-eye (Zosterops japonicus) by W Kwong

The species is widespread and is part of a superspecies complex that includes Zosterops japonicus, Zosterops meyeni and possibly others. The species is found in a wide range of habitats from scrub to moist forest.

They sometimes occur on mangrove areas such as in the Karachi area. and on islands they may lead a more insectivorous life. They are somewhat rare only in the drier desert regions of western India. A feral population was detected in San Diego, California in the 1980’s and subsequently eradicated.

These white-eyes are sociable, forming flocks which only separate on the approach of the breeding season. They are highly arboreal and only rarely descend to the ground.

God too expects us to be highly arboreal (living in a tree)..

  • Adam tried to live on the tree of life but was chased away from God’s presence..
  • We have a tree, the CROSS TREE, where Christ – the Vine hung to make us more like Him..
  • Now is the time to check if we are Arboreal?

I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20)

The breeding season is February to September but April is the peak breeding season and the compact cup nest is a placed like a hammock on the fork of a branch. The nest is made of cobwebs, lichens and plant fibre.
The nest is built in about 4 days and the two pale blue eggs are laid within a couple of days of each other. The eggs hatch in about 10 days. Both sexes take care of brooding the chicks which fledge in about 10 days Though mainly insectivorous, the Oriental White-eye will also eat nectar and fruits of various kinds.

They call frequently as they forage and the usual contact call is a soft nasal cheer.

They pollinate flower when they visit them for flower insects (such asthrips) and possibly nectar that form their diet. The forehead is sometimes coloured by pollen leading to mistaken identifications.

  • Do we visit Rose of Sharon and the Lilly of the valley every day and help in pollination?
  • If yes, why is that people are not able to witness pollen grains (Word of God) on most of our foreheads?

Therefore shall you lay up these my words in your heart and in your soul, and bind them for a sign upon your hand, that they may be as frontlets between your eyes. (Deuteronomy 11:18)

When nesting, they may mob palm squirrels but being small birds they are usually on the defensive. Their predators include bats (esp. Megaderma lyra) and birds such as the White-throated Kingfisher. Like some other white-eyes, they sometimes steal nest material from the nests of other birds Cases of interspecific feeding have been noted with white-eyes feeding the chicks of a Paradise Flycatcher.

They have been observed bathing in dew accumulated on leaves.

  • Do we remember, Israelites collected manna covered with the morning dew?

Which means feasting of Manna at dawn increases His grace in our life isn’t it? His grace is like early morning dew, this is what the Bible says right?

  • Without His grace it is unlikely for us to survive..

It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness. (Lamentations 3:22-23)

Oriental White-eye (Zosterops palpebrosus) ©WikiC

Oriental White-eye (Zosterops palpebrosus) ©WikiC

Although not strong fliers, they are capable of dispersing in winds and storms to new areas including offshore islands. Though these birds are not strong fliers, they still are able to disperse in wind and storm..

  • When we are weak , we need to remember that God uses the weak and the weary..
  • When you face a storm is life, just think of these birds and disperse in the storm…
  • For God always makes us lie down in green pastures and leads us beside still waters..
  • What storm is for others will be still waters for you and me, cos our Lord is our good Shepherd!

Apostle Paul had a thorn in His flesh, you know what God said?

And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me (2 Corinthians 12:9)

Lets seek for His bountiful grace each dawn to fly high above troubled waters..

Have a grace filled day!

Yours in YESHUA,
a j mithra


Lee’s Addition:

Read more from a j mitha

The White-eyes are in the Zosteropidae – White-eyes Family.

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Is Eagle’s Weight Our Weight?

Steller's Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus pelagicus) by Lee at NA

Steller’s Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus pelagicus) by Lee at NA

Is Eagle’s Weight Our Weight? ~ by a j mithra

The strike force
of the eagle’s talon
is as powerful
as twice the force
of a rifle bullet…

Pound for pound,
an eagle’s wing
is much more stronger
than the wing of an airplane.
An eagle can kill
a young deer
and fly away with it.
These are some of the
amazing facts
about the Eagle..

We all want to fly high
like an Eagle..
Isn’t it?

We wouldn’t mind
waiting for a bus
or wait in a que
at a Cinema theatre,
or wait for a long time
in a bank..
But,
do we really take time
to wait at the feet
of the LORD?

But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31)

Have a Blessed day!

Your’s in YESHUA,
a j mithra

Please visit us at: Crosstree

ajmithra21

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Fly Light…

Mallards flying off by Ian

Mallards flying off by Ian

Fly Light… ~ by a j mithra

Do birds carry
heavy or light luggage
when they fly?
Never,
cos,
they know that
its easier to fly light
without excess weight…

Though we wait
on the LORD,
we still are not able to
fly high over the storm..

Why?
Is it cos
we carry all the junk like

  • fears and tears,

and,

  • anger and pain?

LETS FLY LIGHT
FOR THE LIGHT…

Therefore seeing we also are surrounded with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which does so easily ensnare us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, (Hebrews 12:1)

Have a Blessed day!

Your’s in YESHUA,
a j mithra

Please visit us at: Crosstree

ajmithra21

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