Haibun: My Shield

What’s on my mind this August 31st morning? As disastrous events continue to unfold around the world, I try to wash my mind of a sense of impending doom and rather focus on the goodness and love of people around the world. I am thankful for my faith in a loving, caring God who is my rock and, with my wife’s support, I am hopeful for the future. Faith and prayer are my shield against always circling fear and hopelessness.

my eyes rest

on the old crucifix

breaking news on TV

©️Al W Gallia
Psalm 4:   7 Many say, “May we see better times! LORD, show us the light of your face!” 8 But you have given my heart more joy than they have when grain and wine abound. 9 In peace I will lie down and fall asleep, for you alone, LORD, make me secure.  

Lord, Hear our Prayers

America’s good people, those individuals that simply want the freedom to pray, learn, work, love, and raise families, need God’s intervention and help to straighten our road again. We must pray 24/7 that He will forgive us and teach us to forgive, compromise, work together, and live peaceably again.

around the world

churches filled with masked people…

quiet murmur of prayers

Al W Gallia 2021-08-09

Blessings and peace, my friends.

Eugis-weekly-prompt-round-the-world-august-5-2021

Surviving the Storms

Ominous!

Six years ago, while we were spending a stormy day at an Alabama coastal campground, I simply watched the rain and listened to the continuous thunder. Nature photography was my love at the time and I had no inkling then that, over the next year, I would also fall in love with haiku, a Japanese short form poetry which would greatly enhance my aging life.

thunder and lightning…

cuddled around the fireplace

an old man and his wife

Al W Gallia 08/07/21

The world has changed so much since then with social and political unrest, ongoing Covid pandemic, mask wearing, social isolation, and loss of family and friends. At our age, it is hard for my wife and me to adjust to this new stormy reality. But we are survivors and we have a strong faith and hope in our loving God and Redeemer, Jesus Christ. So we face the storm head-on without fear, staying focused on the Truth and Light. Blessings and peace, my friends.

Summer Respite

Nothing is more peaceful in the summer than a cypress swamp in the dead heat of day. The stillness is broken only by cicadas harmonizing, peepers chirping, and occasional egrets calling. Nature’s pungent perfume wafts on a random light breeze that gently moves a few lily pads. Sweat drips from my brow onto my camera. I love it! okay

in the duckweed

a gator’s eye twitches…

foraging wood ducks

©️Al W Gallia 2021

Thank you, Lord, for this moment of your peace in our troubled world.

Morning Offering

It is the 2nd Lenten season during this worldwide Covid-19 pandemic, in which we are struggling to survive. Do we actually think that we can succeed, as ‘one nation under God’, without Him, by continuing to turn away from Him in our lives? I think not, as faith and prayer are the true way and God is the source of all love, goodness and hope.

morning fog lifts…

the scent of coffee rises

with his prayers

©Al W Gallia 2021
Morning Peace

Consider these verses from Jeremiah 17: 5-10:

Thus says the LORD:
Cursed is the man who trusts in human beings,
who makes flesh his strength,
whose heart turns away from the LORD.
He is like a barren bush in the wasteland
that enjoys no change of season,
But stands in lava beds in the wilderness,
a land, salty and uninhabited.
Blessed are those who trust in the LORD;
the LORD will be their trust.
They are like a tree planted beside the waters
that stretches out its roots to the stream:
It does not fear heat when it comes,
its leaves stay green;
In the year of drought it shows no distress,
but still produces fruit.
More tortuous than anything is the human heart,
beyond remedy; who can understand it?
I, the LORD, explore the mind
and test the heart,
Giving to all according to their ways,
according to the fruit of their deeds.

Creativity: A Tonic for Aging

Occasionally I run across an article that sparks meaningful thoughts in my mind. After a year of social distancing (actually self-imposed isolation), my wife and I begin the latter part of our lives, our eighties, amidst worldwide Covid-19 pandemic, family and friends illnesses and deaths, economic turmoil, and civil unrest. It would be so easy for me to just fade back into the woodwork, waiting for some change that may not come, and die a slow death of mental dullness watching TV movies. But that is not me or my wife! Creativity has always been a big part of our lives in many varied ways.

camera in hand

he leans on his walking stick

the egret stares back

©️Al W Gallia 2021

For me, nature photography and haiku poetry have been my creative interests for many years. I realize how important such activities are for mental exercise and personal enjoyment. I also realize that continued pursuit of these activities requires certain physical adjustments that aging requires. Such changes were, at first, hard to accept but prayer, meditation, and trust in a loving God always light the way.

bayou stillness

his paddle’s swirl

the only sound

©️Al W Gallia 2021

So, if you feel the need to be creative at this stage in your life, the following guest post may provide helpful ideas.

Guest Post: How To Become A More Creative Person

Stumbled upon a super awesome website that I really must recommend you to read. Their niche is mainly in the areas of relationship, health, family …

Guest Post: How To Become A More Creative Person

First Snowfall

The first snowfall in a late autumn woodlands is a glorious sight! Almost a cleansing of the year’s trials and pains as translucent whiteness slowly overlays the remaining leaves, branches, and grasses.

first snowfall

a white blanket adorned

with reds and golds

©️Al W Gallia 2021

Standing alone amidst this wonderland, I can only marvel at one of God’s greatest gifts to mankind: nature’s beauty. I hear only the faint, pervasive sounds of falling snow, and raising my face to heaven, say “thank you, Lord!”

Eugi’s Weekly Prompt – Winter – February 4, 2021

The Dandelion

One year into our Covid-19 pandemic lockdown, how the priorities of my life have changed! No longer do my wife and I plan fun shopping trips, cafe lunches, or casual visiting with family and friends. Add to that the stress of politics and the realities of turning 80, and we are now living in a new ‘normal’, maybe forever.

The one thing that makes our situation bearable is an unwavering FAITH in a loving, caring God, and the love and companionship we give each other! And one of the best ways to feel and hear Him is in the solitude and beauty of nature, where no words are needed but only awareness.

winter walkabout

among the dead leaves

a dandelion shoot

©Al W Gallia 2021

Nature is Church

Christmas Season 2020. For me, a quiet time of reflection on the trials and tribulations this last year has heaped on the world, on us all. The ‘why?’ is the big question and the possibilities are many, including God’s retribution for the world’s turning away from him to purely random happenings in our complex world according to the ‘Chaos Theory’. Yet, while we humans struggle to understand the why and how of events, only Nature simply lives quietly with acceptance.

Whatever the cause (if any), we have an opportunity to re-evaluate our lives and our priorities for the new year. We should put faith, love, prayer, empathy, understanding, and compromise back into our lives. And for me, the beauty and solitude of nature is the best place for a meditation with God/Jesus about my needed new outlook on life. As survivors of 2020, we still have so much to be thankful for, so let the loneliness of this Christmas season be a time for rekindling faith and trust in our loving God. Blessings and peace.

Faith…the Saving Path

have faith in God

Sunday morning, a rainy day, almost nine months on covid lockdown. The old wall clock and I are having our normal conversation; which is pretty much one sided as it never says anything except “tick tock”. Japanese ‘solitude’ music drifts in the background… my glider chair keeping time.

life is walking

a fallen tree in a lake…

your feet get wet

©️Al W Gallia 2020

My precious wife is catching up on some much needed sleep, so I am enjoying my much needed quiet time for reflection. Keep your faith in God and focus on Christ as this year of 2020 is surely in accordance with His will. Stay safe, my family and friends. Blessings and peace.