Lee’s Four Word Thursday – 8/10/17

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Dunnock (Prunella modularis) Singing ©WikiC

MY STRENGTH AND SONG

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“The LORD is my strength and song, And He has become my salvation; He is my God, and I will praise Him; My father’s God, and I will exalt Him.” (Exodus 15:2 NKJV)

Dunnock (Prunella modularis) Singing ©WikiC

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Lee’s Two Word Tuesday – 7/25/17

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Chestnut-breasted Munia (Lonchura castaneothorax) ©WikiC

GATHER US

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“Save us, O LORD our God, and gather us from among the heathen, to give thanks unto thy holy name, and to triumph in thy praise.” (Psalms 106:47 KJV)

Chestnut-breasted Mannikin  (Lonchura castaneothorax) ©WikiC

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Lee’s Seven Word Sunday – 7/9/17

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Lesser Double-collared Sunbird enjoying a Kniphofia flower ©©Rambling Ocean-Boeta.

THE LORD’S NAME

IS TO BE PRAISED

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“From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the LORD’S name is to be praised.” (Psalms 113:3 KJV)

Lesser Double-collared Sunbird enjoying a Kniphofia flower ©©Rambling Ocean-Boeta.

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Lee’s Four Word Thursday – 11/17/16

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Dusky Broadbill (Corydon sumatranus) ©©Mike

HIS MOUTH WAS OPENED

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“And his mouth was opened immediately, and his tongue loosed, and he spake, and praised God.
(Luke 1:64 KJV)

Dusky Broadbill (Corydon sumatranus) ©©Mike

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Lee’s Five Word Friday – 8/26/16

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Flamingo by Dan' at Flamingo Gardens

I WILL PRAISE THY NAME

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“O LORD, thou art my God; I will exalt thee, I will praise thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things; thy counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.” (Isaiah 25:1 KJV)

Flamingo by Dan at Flamingo Gardens, FL

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Lee’s Seven Word Sunday – 1/31/16

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American Yellow Warbler (Dendroica aestiva) singing by J Fenton

A SONG OF PRAISE TO OUR GOD

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He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God; Many will see and fear And will trust in the LORD. (Psalms 40:3 NASB)

American Yellow Warbler (Dendroica aestiva) singing by Jim Fenton

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Sandra’s New Kooky Challenge

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Enter Into His Gates With Thanksgiving

Enter into His gates with thanksgiving

James J. S. Johnson

Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.  Serve the Lord with gladness; come before His presence with singing.  Know ye that the Lord He is God; it is He Who hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people, and the sheep of His pasture.  Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise; be thankful unto Him, and bless His name.  For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting; and His truth endureth to all generations.  (Psalm 100)

Sometimes what you expect to find, is not what you find.  This is true of Grenada’s official bird, if you assume it matches Grenada’s official coat of arms.  This is also true if you imagine that the Thanksgiving holiday, as it is celebrated in Grenada, is like the Thanksgiving holiday as it is celebrated in America.

Fair Use credit: http://tolweb.org/tree/ToLimages/217681451_7e4971beab_o.250a.jpg

Grenada’s official coat of arms includes an Armadillo and a Grenada Dove (Leptotila wells  —  a/k/a Well’s dove or pea dove), positioned above the motto “Ever conscious of God, we aspire, build, and advance as one people.”   The Grenada Dove is endemic to Grenada – i.e., only on the island of Grenada is the Grenada Dove found in the wild, and even there it is critically “endangered” (i.e., close to extinction).   The dove’s coloring, as depicted on the Grenada coat of arms, however, does not closely match the actual coloring of the real bird.

(Grenada coat of arms – public domain)

(Grenada coat of arms – public domain)

The dove’s coloring, as depicted on the Grenada coat of arms, however, does not closely match the actual coloring of the real bird.  The actual Grenada Dove has little blue to it (depending on the lighting used to view it)  –  rather, brown and buff dominate its overall coloring.  One wonders why, therefore, the heraldic depiction shows indigo-blue and azure, with yellow highlighting.  Consider the more realistic depictions before, as shown by photographic and postage images.

Fair use credit:  grenada national archiveshttps://grenadanationalarchives.wordpress.com/tag/leptotila-wellis/ (from the website of the National Archives of Grenada)

(Grenada postage stamp issued in February of AD1974 – public domain)

Consider also these special World Wildlife Fund-logo Grenada postage stamps,  showing Grenada Doves.

Grenada stamps 1

Grenada stamps 2

(Grenda postage stamps issued in January AD1995 – public domain)

The lesson here, apparently, is that heraldic coat-of-arms depictions of birds can (sometimes) be quite unrealistic – or else the artist might be depicting the wrong bird!

But Grenada’s coat of arms is not the only surprise in its national symbols.

Consider now the holiday we call “Thanksgiving”.

In the United States of America, for a contrasting example, the holiday of “Thanksgiving” (celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November) commemorates the gratitude of Plymouth Pilgrims, as pioneer survivors, who thanked God at harvest time in AD1621, for His providence — see “Strangers and Pilgrims (and the American Turkey)”, posted at https://leesbird.com/2014/11/25/strangers-and-pilgrims/ .  The Pilgrims’ survival and early successes, due to God’s providence, are also celebrated in the Netherlands, in Leiden, to commemorate how the Pilgrims lived in Holland during AD1609-AD1620.  A special Thanksgiving worship service is conducted, there, on the morning of America’s Thanksgiving, in Pieterskerk [“Peter’s church”], a Gothic church that was originally Roman Catholic (from its architectural beginning in AD1390), yet became Protestant during the Dutch Reformation, and became the burial site for John Robinson, pastor of the Pilgrims prior to their migratory journey to America.

Canadians observe a similar holiday, called l’Action de grâce in French, on the second Monday in October.

Norfolk Island, an external territory of Australia, celebrates Thanksgiving on the last Wednesday of November, so that Norfolk Island’s celebration of Thanksgiving occcurs either the day before, or six days after, the day when Americans celebrate Thanksgiving.

Saint Lucia, an island nation on the eastern edge of the Caribbean Sea, celebrates Thanksgiving on the first Monday in October.

Christians in Germany have a similar harvest-thanksgiving holiday, Erntedankfest, in early October, at about the same time that its Bavarians are celebrating Oktoberfest.

Thanksgiving is supposed to be focused on thanking God —  even the name of the holiday suggests as much.  However, although gratitude to God  –-  for harvest blessings  —  was the original reason for most harvest festival-oriented “thanksgiving” holidays, many Thanksgiving traditions have forgotten the historic importance of thanking God for His caring providences, by focusing more on distractive parades (e.g., Macy’s, IKEA’s, McDonald’s), football games, and feasting  —  with such festive celebrations discounted in slang as “Turkey Day”. (British Laird Bill Cooper was quite disappointed to learn of this trivialized secularization of what was originally a holy day/holiday.)

But how is Thanksgiving celebrated in Grenada, and why ?

First, consider where Grenada is located – Grenada is an island nation situated slightly east of South America, north of Venezuela.  Politically speaking, the nation of Grenada actually includes the main island (called “Grenada”) plus a few smaller islands, some but not all of “the Grenadines”, which are situated north of the Martinique Channel – with several of the other Grenadine islands (located south of the Martinique Channel) jurisdictionally belonging to the Caribbean nation called “St. Vincent and the Grenadines”.

grenada map

In AD1498 the main island of Grenada was visited by Christopher Columbus, who named it “Concepcion”.

Grenada was later visited by Britons, then French; it was eventually settled by French colonists. Later, as part of the Treaty of Paris (in AD1763), Grenada became a British colony.  Grenada shed its colonial status, however, in AD1974, as it then became officially independent of the United Kingdom, although it remained an affiliate of the British Commonwealth.

So far so good, it seemed, until AD1983, when a Communist military takeover occurred on the island, led by General Hudson Austin (who was politically backed by Cuba, and aided by Cuban soldiers), actually seized control from a prior Communist takeover (i.e., one Communist regime killed off the leadership of a prior Communist dictatorship).  American students were put in jeopardy so President Ronald Reagan authorized a military rescue operation, which included defeating the “New Jewel Movement” (i.e., the second Communist dictatorship).

Thus, beginning on October 25th of AD1983, the “New Jewel Movement” Communists, who had seized the country, were soon opposed by a coalition of rescue forces, comprised of the United States and several Caribbean allies (from six Caribbean nations, including Jamaica and Barbados), in a complicated military effort called “Operation Urgent Fury” – which included U.S. Army Rangers, U.S. Marines, Delta Force, 82nd Airborne paratroopers, and U.S. Navy SEALs.  Because the rescue operation was so successful – and peace was restored to Grenada (with the Cuban soldiers being expelled) a holiday of gratitude was established – October 25th became Thanksgiving Day for Grenada.

Operation Urgent Fury photograph

Operation Urgent Fury photograph (public domain, AD1983) M102 howitzers (320th Field Artillery Regiment) firing on Grenada island.

Bottom line:   we all  –  whether Americans or Grenadians or anyone else for whom Christ died  —  have a lot to be thankful for, on whatever day that we celebrate Thanksgiving (and on every other day of the year!).

In accord with Psalm 100 we should, daily, “enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise; be thankful unto Him, and bless His name”.

Sunday Inspiration – Singing Birds

Savannah Sparrow singing by Ray

Savannah Sparrow singing by Ray

By them the birds of the heavens have their home; They sing among the branches. (Psalms 104:12 NKJV)

The Lord created the birds with the ability to sing such beautiful songs. They have various reasons for singing and shouldn’t we also be willing to sing in our different activities?

The LORD is my strength and my shield; My heart trusted in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart greatly rejoices, And with my song I will praise Him. (Psalms 28:7 NKJV)

“O God, my heart is fixed; I will sing and give praise, even with my glory.” (Psalms 108:1 KJV)

Yellow-throated Vireo (Vireo flavifrons) singing ©nebirdsplus

Yellow-throated Vireo (Vireo flavifrons) singing ©nebirdsplus

And some more great “singing” verses:

Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; (Ephesians 5:19 KJV)

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. (Colossians 3:16 KJV)

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“Singing” – by Dr. Richard Gregory (permission given by Mrs. Gregory)

Dr. Gregory, who was a member of our church, is now in the presence of the Lord. He is seeing His Saviour “Face to face.”

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Sunday Inspiration

Birds of the Bible

Birds of the Bible – Singing Birds

Birds in Hymns

Sharing The Gospel

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Happy Thanksgiving Day – 2013

Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) by Lee at LPZoo

Wild Turkey (Meleagris gallopavo) by Lee at LPZoo

We trust you are enjoying your Thanksgiving Day and are remembering all your blessings this year. We have had many blessings since last Thanksgiving.

We have had challenges also, but it depends on how you look at them. You could consider them as terrible or you could see them as blessings. Our attitude and our focus can make all the difference in the world.

I choose to thank the Lord for all things. Sometimes things don’t go the way we expect, but that does not mean that the Lord does not love us.

that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. (Matthew 5:45 NKJV)

Blue-naped Mousebird (Urocolius macrourus) at Cincinnati Zoo) by Lee

Blue-naped Mousebird (Urocolius macrourus) at Cincinnati Zoo) by Lee

Since last Thanksgiving Day, I have had two eye surgeries, squamous cell cancer taken off my neck, and a recent round of bronchitis. Praise the Lord, they all came out fine. At the time you are going through them, you do not know what the outcomes will be and you just keep your eyes focused on the Lord. Of course, you are praying and thanking the Lord for whatever He choses as your outcome.

Wood Duck - Lake Morton by Lee

Wood Duck – Lake Morton by Lee

During this last year, we were fortunate to see numerous birds, both in the wild, at parks and in zoos. Our birdwatching adventures were always enjoyable as we were able to watch the Lord’s creations in person. Photos are great, but seeing them as they move and are doing their thing is always best.

Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created. (Revelation 4:11 KJV)

Bali Myna (Leucopsar rothschildi Palm Beach Zoo by Lee

Bali Myna (Leucopsar rothschildi Palm Beach Zoo by Lee

We had visits to the Cincinnati Zoo, Palm Beach Zoo, Gatorland, and numerous visit to the Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa. Those visits, plus all the parks, lakes and just watching birds in our yard, made for plenty to be thankful for.

Blue-crowned Motmot at Lowry Park Zoo by Lee 2013

Blue-crowned Motmot at Lowry Park Zoo by Lee

When you add in all the blessings of friends and family, our church, and on and on; there is much to be thankful to the Lord.

American Flamingo Beak at Gatorland by Lee

American Flamingo Beak at Gatorland by Lee

I trust you spend some time today, being thankful for all your blessings. Especially, thanking the Lord, who created everything and loves us enough to send His Son to die for us.

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. (John 3:16-17 KJV)

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Birdwatching Trips

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