Resurrection Day 2019

The Darkness Of Day Two

Yesterday was Good Friday. The day that Jesus Christ was hung up on the cross. As a Christian I believe that Jesus was God in the flesh. That the King of the universe created himself a bodily vehicle and lived, walked, taught and healed among mortal man. He was simultaneously both fully God and Fully man. And I believe that the disciples who followed him were at least partly aware of this. He was the messiah. The God/Man who had come to fix everything. But on Good Friday, God laid down his life and died. Notice that I didn’t say that he was slain. And mortal man who endured crucifixion would have been but being immortal Christ could not have been killed no matter how brutal he was treated. Then he cried out that God had forsaken him.

Digital art by Lloyd’s Lens Photography.

The flesh couldn’t die until the Spirit of God removed himself. And darkness covered the earth. And they buried the messiah. The bible tells us a lot about what happened on Good Friday. And the “Good News” of His resurrection is well documented. But on day two, the universe wept. Hope was gone. Peter went as far as to deny ever having met Jesus Christ on three different occasions. Day Two had to be the darkest day in human history. I have been saving tonight’s feature image just for this post because of the dark feeling invoked by the clouds and the rain on the sunroof of my wife’s car. (A technique that I use often) I think that it captures the feeling that his followers would have had on day two. The Bible says that during this day of darkness that Jesus was in Hell. That during our time of darkness he went to the prisoners in Hell and released those who died before His sacrifice was made. Itp wouldn’t be fair on the day of judgment to have not provided the opportunity of repentance to every soul that had ever lived. (Reference 1st Peter 3:18 – 20)

But his followers could not have known this. Day two had to be a day of doubts.

It’s a reminder to me that just because the darkness surrounds me and just because I don’t actually see what God is doing in my life doesn’t mean that nothing is happening.

Then, on the morning of day three the clouds rolled back and light returned to the earth. The two Marys had been to his grave and were the first to be told that hope was not lost. In fact, hope was just beginning and it was going to get even better.

It’s typical for us as Christians adapt the cross as the symbol of the sacrifice that cleansed us from our sins. But it’s the empty grave that ensures our own Resurrection.

Just a quick note before I close. There won’t be post for Resurrection Sunday. I’m taking the day off and the next post will be on Monday night. I’m also forgoing the normal marketing pitch at the end since tonight’s post is more of a testimony dedicated to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Good night and be blessed.

Holding My Peace

Hello Friends! Tonight’s feature image is titled “Peace Like A River ” and is available for purchase by following the instructions at the bottom of the article.

Ever since I was a kid people have advised me to “hold my peace”. It wasn’t until recently that I understood that this phrase didn’t necessarily mean shut up. Oh, I understand that’s what most people intend when they invoke the words but it means something different to me now. I hope that it’s going to mean something different for you too after this post. I realize that I have some readers that are not Christian. I can’t write this one from any other perspective. So, if you’re offended by Christianity then this post isn’t for you. You can skip this one. Unless of course, you’re tolerant enough to read it and try to gain something. I write a lot about peaceful moments and quiet time. The images that I share with you are normally places where I go to spend a few moments with Jesus Christ or in some cases something that makes me feel his presence in my life. It’s the things that “recharge my batteries”.

Christ is an endless supply of peace. We can be filled at any time. But the real challenge is staying full of peace in a world where your peace is under constant assault. I don’t have to provide examples, we all know where that stress comes from. Which brings me to my point. Being filled with peace and holding onto your peace might be two different things. Holding my peace now means something different to me. It means the ability to carry that peace throughout the day. I’m just as human as the next guy. There’s times when my peace battery is completely depleted. I’ve even gotten stressed out about being stressed out. The Apostle Paul said that he had to repent every day. But you know what? I’ve never really read where Jesus Christ refused to accept repentance. Don’t get me wrong, there will be a day when the age of grace closes and the day of vengeance will be at hand but not until after the rapture. Today we can simply come apart from the outside world and recharge as often as we need. And holding onto your peace gets easier with practice. Even if that means holding as long as you can and then running outside or into the next room to regain your grip on it. That grip will get stronger with exercise.

I hope you find this post and image to be an encouragement. Be blessed and have a great day.

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Primrose And Bees

It never really ceases to amaze me when I find out how detailed God’s creation is. All along the edges of my property I find Evening Primrose. The bright yellow bloom always makes me smile. But today I learned something new about the happy yellow flowers that just turned up one day and stayed. They can hear. Israeli scientists have discovered that the petals function like ears. When Primrose flowers “hear” the buzz of bees they actually release sweeter nectar to draw them in. They only react this way to the sounds of pollinators. Making the sweet nectar is biologically expensive and comes with other complications so the Primrose plant doesn’t produce it until it’s likely to be visited by a pollinator. I didn’t really see it mentioned in the article but I’m willing to bet that the bees will buzz the flowers in an effort to “wake them up “. If this is happening then I would expect to see the bee hover close to the flowers and then come back once it’s had time to produce the sweet treat.

Albert Einstein is credited with having said that God doesn’t play dice with the universe. When I think about the relationship between the Primrose plant and the bees I see this as evidence that not only does He not play dice with the universe but He’s designed a perfect system and that everything has it place and a roll to play in it. For those of us who desire a harmonious relationship with God let me ask if that should also mean a harmonious relationship with his natural world? I believe so. If we could just figured out the little details and pursue a simple lifestyle I believe that creation would respond to us the way the Primrose responds to the bee. In the garden of Eden God told Adam and Eve to subdue the Earth, not destroy it. (The word subdue implying gentle persuasion. )

I’m providing a Link to the full article in case you’re interested in reading it for yourself. As always links to my blog and Facebook page are provided below.

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Homebound

The road home can be a steep climb. Sometimes there’s unexpected twists and turns. Some days the journey is through wind and rain or ice and snow. Some days are full of warm sunshine and the trees are full of singing birds. The journey home can be long. Blessed is the one who is joined by companions who encourage you to continue on. Even if they can’t travel along beside you every day. The warm smile in greeting and the voice that speaks gentle words of encouragement was a greater gift than you ever knew. It shouldn’t come as a shock that you made it home first. You should know that those encouraging words will echo in my memory until the day that I also approach that gate that marks the end of the journey. I won’t be surprised to see your smile or listen to the excitement in your voice as the gate opens up to welcome us home.

In honor of Billy. I’ll see you when I get home too.

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The One True Gift

The Most Recognizable Christmas Decoration is of course the Nativity Scene itself. When I was a kid it was just as common as the Snowman and Santa Claus are today. Every village square and every church yard displayed a large manger scene with livestock, wise men, shepherds and angels. Almost every home had a rustic miniature nativity that seemed to be either on the coffee table or the large stereo cabinet in the living room.

The secular world certainly has lots of questions about where Jesus was born, how he was born and they’re quick to point out that December 25th was not his real birthday. Yeah, we knew that already. And it doesn’t matter. My faith is not in the date. My faith is not in how many wise men actually showed up. It doesn’t matter if he was born in a manger or under a tree and then brought into the manger later. My faith is in the identity of the child who was given out of the love of my creator for all of mankind. My salvation is in the fact that Jesus was both God and Man and that his innocent blood would be shed thirty three years later to bring reconciliation between us and father God. It’s just that simple. And, if I can just hold on to the truth of why we celebrate and who we celebrate then it truly is Christmas every day.

Normally I end my blog post by pitching my business and instructions on how to contact me or follow my page but tonight I wanted to take a break and just give you something from the heart. Tonight’s image is untitled and not for sale. It’s simply a confession of my faith. That though Jesus Christ I was reconciled unto God almighty. There’s a Christmas gift for ya. From reconciliation to redemption and the things God has in store for the believer beyond this broken world.

Merry Christmas friends and may God bless us every one.

Tomorrow night there will be no post. I’m taking Christmas Day off to spend time with family. My next post will be on December 26th.

The Long Night And Meaning Of The Lights On The Tree

Recently I made the comment that I was more excited about the 21st of December than I was for the 24th or 25th. The 21st of December is the longest night of year. And, when the dawn breaks on the 22nd the light returns to planet Earth. Most people are aware of the winter solstice and how the early church decided that it was just perfect for celebrating Jesus’s birthday.

Saint John 1:4-5

4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

Simply put, the lights on a Christmas tree represent Jesus Christ as the light of the world.

The Appalachian Winter is one where we can have snow or rain or both for Christmas but the darkness of December is a constant. The steep incline of our hills and low angle of the sun makes the normally long night even longer. The darkness like sin seems to suffocate you. It brings a coldness that seeps into very core of your being. But just when you think it’s going to be dark forever the light breaks over a distant ridge and the cold night begins to retreat. The light returns and with it comes new life.

As I’ve studied the deeper meanings behind our Christmas decorations I’ve come to understand that the Christmas Tree itself is a microcosm of the Jesus experience. We can decorate the tree with all kinds of trinkets and bobbles and assign different meanings to them and make it a beautiful and artistic expression of our Christian faith but it’s when the lights are turned on that it comes to life and brings us joy.

So, that’s the meaning behind the Christmas lights. It’s the expression of new life coming into world and the exit of the long dark night.

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Tonight’s Feature Image is untitled but is available for purchase by usingthe Contact Form on my website. ( just click the picture of the bell below)

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4X6 is $5.00

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All About The Christmas Holly

Well by gosh by golly, tonight’s post is all about holly!

One of the more familiar icons of the Christmas season in North America holly is a direct analogy to Jesus Christ.

Obviously the red berries are said to represent the blood that was shed for the remittance of sin. Only innocent blood could break the curse of Adam.

The prickles on the leaves are in relationship to the crown of thorns. In Roman Times the highest honor a leader could receive was a crown made from the grass of the battlefield where he had just gained victory. Because the thorn is a symbol for the curse of Adam a crown of thorns could be seen as a symbol for Christ’s victory, awarded to him by the sinners who He was born to save.

Holly is evergreen representing eternal life bestowed upon us by Jesus.

The wood produced by holly is white and symbolizes purity.

On a side note, if you want to have pretty red berries on your holly tree you need two trees. Holly comes in male and female trees. Holly grows wild in my area and before I understood why I would be disappointed to see one without berries.

In addition to that, one of my Forestry instructors would tell us that “holy wood will guide you right”. The wood is very fine grained and somewhat oily. Because of this it was once used to make guide pins for saw mills.

Even though Christmas holly is evergreen there is a type of holly tree that is deciduous. It has bright red berries like it’s festive Christmas cousin but the leaves turn bright yellow in the fall and drop in winter.

The berries of all hollies are poison but beautiful to look at making them great landscaping for the drab backdrop of winter.

That’s pretty much it for holly as it relates to the Christmas season. I hope that you have enjoyed this post.

Hello Friends and thank you for your support of my page. If you have enjoyed the photos or the writings please let me know by commenting and sharing my work on your social media. I also want to invite you to Follow Lloyds Lens Photography on Facebook

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Recently, I’ve been made aware that many of my posts on Facebook are being buried in the feed. So, if you don’t want to miss a post then you can sign up for email alerts on my website at the bottom of theWelcome Page

Tonight’s Feature Image is titled “Christmas Holly 2018” and is available for purchase by usingthe Contact Form on my website. ( just click the picture of the bell below)

The second picture is titled “Deciduous Holly 2018” and is also available for purchase by using the Contact Form on my website.

( just click the picture of the bell below)

(Note, I do not share or sell contact information. EVER)

4X6 is $5.00

5X7 is $10.00

8X10 is $15.00

Some cropping may be necessary for certain sizes.

Ring this bell to order prints or schedule portraits

I’m also available for portraits by appointment. Use the Contact Form or message me on Facebook for details.