And God said, "Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the vault of the sky." So God created the great creatures of the sea and every living thing with which the water teems and that moves about in it, according to their kinds, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.
My husband, Danny, loves photography. Over the years, he has taken many splendid photos of the birds that frequent our backyard, including these awesome specimens.
But there is one species in particular that he longs to snag in the perfect close up: The Pileated woodpecker.
These birds tend to be heard before they're seen. Their deep, hollow pecking at dead wood and their eerie, ear-splitting call guide our eyes toward the lofty heights of the trees. And even if we spy an elusive Pileated, Danny doesn't have a camera lens powerful enough to render any decent picture.
Imagine Danny's delight when he catches these gems several years back.
Danny figures these may be the best images of this shy bird he'll ever capture.
But he is wrong!
As he is working at his computer, Danny happens to glance out the window. He can't believe his eyes! Slowly and stealthily, he reaches for his camera, adjusts the settings, and tip-toes outside to our deck. And these are the photos he snaps.
Just wow! This Pileated is so engrossed with the dead log, he isn't even aware of Danny's presence. Such rare and spectacular moments happening in our own backyard take our breath away and fill us with awe and wonder.
They remind us to open our eyes to see God's hand in all His indescribable creation; to not take even the tiniest bloom or lowly insect for granted.
God's glory, while breathtaking in the Pileated, is nonetheless in every inch of the natural world. May we seek out signs and miracles of His presence in every living thing.
And see that it is good.
What aspect of God's creation makes you particularly aware of His presence?
Prayer: Father, we thank You for the miracles, large and small, spread before us each day. Let us be aware of Your presence in this marvelous earth You have given to us, and be ever grateful for Your love and mercy. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.