Dense Rainforest

IMG_8014-imp

The Mount Rainier National Park in March 2017 allows for multiple types of terrain to photograph.  The rocky river beds, the thick pines, several feet of snow along with drifts as well as these beautiful draped dense rainforest growth areas.

This is my first wordpress photo challenge so I hope it comes out linked correctly, but was fun to participate.

Advertisement

Changes!!

When this blog was started I was sharing mostly my photography and then along came instagram and more changes for me.  In 2014-2015 writing began to be a focus that I was sharing together with some photos but this blog wasn’t quite what I was shooting for.  So, it has just sat collecting dust.  I am so thankful for many of you that have liked and followed me and I wanted to share the new change with you…. new blog…..

http://www.unearthinghistreasures.wordpress.com

It is now where you will find me.  Hope to have you join me.

Sincerely,

J.K.Sanchez

P.S.  I will periodically – as I am inspired still post here but my focus will be “digging for treasure”!

We Are His Chosen Stones

As the sun begins to rise over the still surface of the lake, not a single ripple stirs. The quiet morning allows for the beckoning opportunity of skipping a stone across its glassy surface. The desire wins and the stones are carefully chosen.

As one stone after another is strategically thrown, a cascade of movement begins to shimmer. In ripples it begins its expansive advancement across the width of the lake. Each stone bounces several times before finding its final silent descent. The once still surface now coming alive with ripples in all directions reaching to the distant shore.

Watching the change that a few chosen stones can make draws my mind to contemplate our lives as those chosen stones – strategically cast upon His waters – our world, our country, our community, our family.

As chosen stones in our Lords hand we have been strategically released into the atmosphere that surrounds our daily lives.

As a stone resting in His hand we are ready to be released. We silently wait for the movement and ripple effect that our very presence will bring. That effect depends not on the stones presence but the pitchers determination and original intent. His desire is the catalyst.

Some skipping stones skip once, some twice and some multiple times – again determined only by the pitchers intent.

As our pitcher releases us – each in different directions the effect on the very atmosphere of our community will be as a ripple movement upon the lake. An expansive advancement will cascade outward pulling the broken, hurting and lost in its wake into the Kingdom of God.

Alone, one stone makes it’s own impact but as each stone connects to the ripples of others our impact will change a still unmoving community into one filled with shimmering life – the gift of eternal life in Christ.

As a child of the King – let’s allow our presence to bring a joyous ripple effect to those around us. For we are His chosen stones and are commissioned to bring the Kingdom of Heaven to those we encounter.

 

Ezekiel 20:41 – As a pleasing aroma I will accept you, when I bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you have been scattered. And I will manifest my holiness among you in the sight of the nations.  

1 Peter 2:4-6 -As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, you yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For it stands in Scripture:

“Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious, and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.”

Assurance of His Love & Entering into His Rest.

SpringsAssuranceJournal2 - Version 2 Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000038_00058]

I am so excited about this book…it is about an extravagant LOVE affair of a groom who is filled to overflowing with unfailing, unconditional, extravagant, favor-filled, passionate, poured out love for his bride.  Wow…That’s my Jesus!  He so loves YOU – His bride.  Its HIS assurance of a gift of love given at the cross.

My second book in the Majestic Reflection Devotional Study Series.

Both the book and the journal will be available on Amazon this week; as well as e-book edition the following week.

 

 

 

 

JournalBookCoverImage BookCoverImageFinding rest in our hectic world is difficult.  Sitting in His presence is the key.

Both Winters Rest and the companion journal are now available on Amazon.com and my link below.

http://www.createspace.com/5076177     (Book)

http://www.createspace.com/5158706    (Journal)

You can find me at: www. jksanchez.com

Winters Thaw – “Some People Are Worth Melting For”

For generations fairy tales have captured our hearts; the hero’s, princess’s, prince’s and villains but today a recent award-winning story is part of my contemplation. We can often find spiritual meaning in the natural as well as in our beloved fairy tales.

The thaw of winter begins deep within the frozen ground where seeds ready for germination rest and wait. The stirring within the seed begins and its purpose pulses – ready for eruption.

Just as the frozen winter ground accepts the suns caressing rays of warmth in order to begin that thaw; often we find ourselves frozen inside, waiting and needing someway to begin the thawing of our hearts.

We find ourselves frozen by fear. Who we are is trapped inside with no escape from the storms that rage continually within. Fear has become our only companion; causing anger, bitterness and condemnation to reign and our hearts become frozen and hard. We tell ourselves to “conceal, don’t feel, don’t show, don’t let them in, don’t let them see”. We fear that who we are just isn’t good enough.

The reality is that just as Olaf said “some people are worth melting for” and Anna sacrificed herself with an act of true love to unfreeze her sisters heart; we have a true sacrifice of love given for us at the cross of Christ. If we “let it go” and accept one ray of His love we can say good-bye to our past.

Jesus provided one act of sacrificial love that will thaw your frozen heart and the “first time in forever” you will walk through an open door filled with love and acceptance for who you are. The past will not haunt you ever again, as you draw into the warmth of Christ. In the presence of His loving warmth the fear, condemnation, anger and bitterness will melt.

Spring will break forth over you. Who you are and all that you are capable of becoming will begin to erupt just as the warming seeds begin to germinate into the beauty that is encapsulated within them.

Step into His warmth, “let it go” and allow His love to melt the frozen parts of your heart.

 

I John 4:18 There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear…..(ESV)

150px-Some_People_Are_Worth_Melting_For_Frozen_Poster

Pause From the Hustle & Bustle – Step into a Winters Rest

JournalBookCoverImage

BookCoverImageWinters Rest – Majestic Reflection Devotional Study Series – Book 1

Over the 2014 year I have begun a “blogging” journey of many comparative thoughts between nature and the spiritual. In September I was inspired to create a devotional quarterly study series from some of these writings along with scripture and questions to journal your own journey into a life lived at the feet of Jesus. Learning to walk daily in a place of rest in His presence.

My first book in a 4 book series has been published and is available on Amazon.com as well as the above link.
There is also an additional journal available if interested, you can find it at http://www.createspace.com/5158706

The Fog Veil Was Torn

In nature we find veils of fog in many places but two bring me to contemplate a comparison of nature versus spiritual.

 

A misty veil of fog slowly materializes on the earth causing a nearly silent enclosure. This can be life threatening if you happen to be the captain of a ship at sea. A veil of fog also slowly materializes over our eyes as we age, causing cataracts that though not life threatening can destroy clarity of vision and disrupt life.

 

Just as that veil of fog settles over the land and a cloudy cataract enshrouds our eye, so can a clouding slip over our heart.

 

In the natural we have designed fog horns to loudly cut through the fog and signal those at sea the proximity of danger; thus giving them hope and safety.

 

A cataract is now removed during a swift surgery that cracks the offensive cloudy lens and places a new clear one thus allowing a previously veiled eye to see with new clarity the world that was veiled.

 

Often we are living a life unaware of a fog that has drifted over our heart. We live a life filled with daily survival.

 

When we see Jesus for the 1st time, we hear the foghorns signal; hope and forgiveness rush in and safety is found. However, there is so much more. Distractions seem to catch us all unaware, just as the fog on the road or the cataract in our eye.

 

Jesus sacrifice tore the veil – the fog – between heaven and earth, pouring forth the very breath of God that is available to us. This breath is much more then forgiveness, it’s a new life filled with ALL His promises and favor. He bought you a brand new life. He replaced the foggy lenses of your eyes with crystal clear ones that can see with new-found clarity. This brightness of vision is filled with the destiny that was given to you at your birth.

IMG_1900 IMG_1846

Due to distractions of life we find that fog has quietly taken over our once joy filled walk with Jesus, our vision has faded, and we are firmly embedded in this drifting fog bank. Much of our clarity and promise of destiny have been swallowed up. Just as the removal of a cataract is a swift procedure so is the restoration of all that was given to us. His favor is always available and the removal of that fog can dissipate in an instant by looking up to the Son.

 

Remember the veil was torn for you! Allow new birth and revelation of His love to erupt over your heart – bringing renewal to what has been covered and an awakened stirring of new sight and direction that can only be accomplished through you for His Kingdom.

Mission Impossible! “Your Mission If You Choose To Accept It”

These words we all know from popular entertainment but consider them in a spiritual sense.

We choose to step into many activities in our lives. Whether it is at church, work or in extracurricular activities, we find ourselves in the impossible situation of “fitting”. How we act, speak and relate to people in those arenas are all connected to that “fitting” process. Many of them are necessary and many are chosen; but when we honestly evaluate this process we find it is just plain hard work.

What in reality we are doing is trying to fit a round peg into a square hole; it’s just not possible.

But “fitting” isn’t what we as the “Bride of Christ” are asked to do. In fact it is the exact opposite. Our face and focus needs to be totally on the face of Christ. We are each different and are as a single flower amidst the shrubs. The “fitting” mentality is all about “us” not “Him”. The “Him” assignment (mission) focus means that He directs our decisions and our involvement in all areas of our lives. It means our current road will become narrow, directed and more fulfilling because He knows the plans and purposes that our lives were designed for. He has the place that is exactly designed for his single flower to be placed.

The “Him” focus turns our eyes off of our “fitting”. We stop and simply ask, “What is my assignment (my mission)? That assignment can be for an hour, a day, a year or a lifetime. Our part is to ask, choose to accept it and do it.

It’s not going to be about us but what He has chosen for us to do and in it we will find pure joy.

Living our lives in this manner means accepting those assignments whether we “think” we can accomplish them or not. His assignments seem impossible to us; but when He gives us a “mission impossible” assignment then we can believe that He will make it possible.

Join me to lay down the “fitting” process. Step out and allow your road to become narrow, accept the impossible assignments that the Holy Spirit is stirring inside of you and let Him make the impossible possible.

Matt 19:26 “ But Jesus looked at them and said,

“With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”DSC02246

Cinderella and The Bride of Christ

As children we fall in love with the fairy tales of Princesses and Princes.

Little girls become women with the “Cinderella syndrome” buried in their hearts.

Little boys become men looking to rescue their “one true love”.

 

Why is that so deep with in us?

I think that somewhere inside of all of us is the hope that there is truth in those stories.

So, lets look at this differently for a moment.

 

Our prince, Jesus will come.

He is waiting to return for His bride and to whisk her away to His magic kingdom with streets of gold and crystal waters for all eternity.

 

As Cinderella was born into nobility yet was forced into servitude where evil prevailed daily through evil family members,

so is the Bride of Christ.

She IS noble but her true identity has been covered over with the thinking and distractions of this world.

Buried like a charwoman who is covered with soot, grim and ash this once beautiful noble bride has lost sight of her one true love.

 

The Bible says that our prince is returning for a Bride that has made herself ready.

So, just as Cinderella had a secret place that sustained her, a place of joy that welled up within her,

a place that brought songs erupting from within and change in her heart from hopelessness to hope;

so must the Bride of Christ find that secret place where the face of Jesus is the ONE thing that matters.

Then her identity will shine through, her hopelessness will begin to fall away and she will erupt with joy

that will change the very atmosphere around her.

 

As with Cinderella, the favor will present itself and in an instant the change from scullery maid to Bride will occur.

Her eyes will be only for her prince.

All else will fade away.

His return on a white horse to whisk her away to the magic kingdom is eminent.

 

Let’s find that secret place and focus only on the face of our beloved.

Let’s be the Bride that has made herself ready.

That when our prince rides up on his white horse with glass slipper in hand we will know that he has come for us!

A Life Lived on the Hamster Wheel? or Have You “Gone Fishing” ?

As a “Type A” personality I’ve spent most of my life seeing my life either as a juggler trying to keep all the plates spinning at the same time or as the constantly running hamster on the wheel. This was just who I was; or so I thought.

One day as my “people pleasing” “self imposed” spinning plates began to crash around me; I ranted out my frustration to God, hoping He would help me keep them going. However, that day I found that God has a sense of humor. In the midst of my tirade a minds eye picture flashed into my head. A painted board with the words “Gone Fishing” presented itself. My reaction quickly turned from startled to an uncontrollable laughter. I knew this was His direct answer to that prayer.

The Fishing Bench

The Fishing Bench

Embracing that thought, stopping the craziness, getting off the wheel, living it and walking it has taken me on a journey of finding the person I was designed to be.

In the resting and “going fishing” process enjoyment of life begins to dawn as relief and freedom become possible. Trusting Jesus, His plan for your life and daily walking in a place of rest are all part of this growth.

Does everything get done? Nope. Does it matter? Nope. Do you lose friends? YES. Some of those you were constantly trying to please, those who kept you on the wheel due to their expectations but not ones that matter. Is it easy? Nope. Is it worth it? Oh Yes. It brings a clear focus of what is important in your life, brings new meaning and crystallizes your focus on who you were designed to be.

Join me in this amazing process. Get off the wheel. Take time to embrace, rest, and trust in Christ’s unique design that is who you are. Enjoy going fishing.