Tag Archives: Christ

Easter

Happy Easter! Christ has risen.

Wisteria

4. Advent

4. Advent 2014Rain and drizzle continue, translucent raindrops, glistening at the tips of branches. The ginkgo trees have lost almost all their leaves by now, the sparse remaining few that have not been swept up already, lie dormant below the trees. The rain makes me contemplate an outing to the North Bay, where a summer trickle always turns into a winter torrent — where the salmon make their way back home. Although I have never seen an adult salmon in the stream, I have seen  plenty of fingerlings. The smell of the trees there is heavenly.

As I walk by a gymnasium, I hear noise coming from inside. A party it seems. I spy an Elmo balloon in a window, then another one, a third, and looking through the next window at least a dozen more. An Elmo party! It looks adorable to see so many Elmos. Kids are jumping about in between the balloons. I also pass I would say, an about five to six-foot tall inflated gorilla on the way to the supermarket. The specimen is dressed in bright red attire. A Santa Claus gorilla — what will the obnoxious sales people think of next?

At the store I find some sunflower seeds and a delightful seasonal specialty: peppermint ice cream. With much satisfaction, I notice on my walk back, that the ridiculous gorilla contraption has deflated. I come by a yard and see a man putting up a wooden manger scene: simple and beautiful — and a true reflection of the season.

Today is the 4. Advent, represented by the candle of love. May the son of God give you peace in your heart today. Amen.

3. Advent

3. Advent 2014The late afternoon sun peeked out just a bit behind the clouds a few days ago, after the deluge of rain that came during the day, so I decided to take a walk before the sun set completely. I remember that last December was almost completely dry — what a difference to this year. Reservoirs rejoice.

As I looked up, I saw a bird sitting on top of the highest telephone wire available. I couldn’t tell if it was a mourning dove or a pigeon, but it was fluffed up, and just like me was enjoying the last daylight.

Today is the 3. Advent, represented by the candle of Joy at Christ’s birth.

Have  a blessed Sunday and week.

Pumpkins and acorn caps

I paid a visit to a Home Depot store the other day (during the last days of October), to purchase a few household maintenance items. Outside the store sat dozens of pumpkins waiting to be taken home and carved, or better yet, turned into pie. It reminded me of the Half Moon Bay pumpkin festival, where they seem to have the annual pumpkin convention, more than well attended, judging by the sea of orange. Inside the store however, no pumpkins were to bee seen — instead Christmas music (and bad music at that) blared over the speakers, as Christmas merchandise was piled high and wide. Come on folks, it’s not even Thanksgiving yet. It’s really disheartening to see such corporate greed, taking all the joy out of the gradual seasonal changes and their accompanying holidays, not to mention the total lack of regard for Christmas and it’s true meaning of God’s son Jesus coming to earth for us. The employees who I talked to about it, seemed resigned to the unseasonal intrusion.

This morning, while I sat in the back under the “acorn tree”, as I playfully like to call it, my cat Calvin joined me, first coming down the stairs at a brisk pace, and then casually exploring the surroundings, including a curious sniff of my donut, that was acknowledged, but left alone (I did eat some bread with cheese and salami too — in case there are questions about nutrition). The jumpiness on his part in regards to falling acorns seems to have disappeared too.

I saw two people coming down the driveway that extends along the fence and then saw the man pick up an acorn cap, which he proceeded to bring near his mouth, cupping his hands and which he then blew into. A high whistling sound emerged. He grinned at me and said, “these acorn caps sure are practical if you get lost in the woods”. After they had left — monkey see — monkey do, I tried to emulate his feat with an acorn shell, alas to no avail. I never could whistle either, much to my consternation. Oh well — we all have different gifts and talents.

Have a blessed week

Easter Monday

Eggs

Eggs

In Germany, Easter Monday  is also a holiday — alas not here. I do hope, that the crocus have prevailed in their fight against the snow by now, as purple, orange, white, and lavender exclamation points to Spring. This morning it rained very heavy for a while, and then, just in time for Easter, it stopped. as the sun pieced the white fluffy clouds and lit up the magnolia blossoms. People brought flowers from their garden to decorate the cross. Christ has risen! The pastor and his wife made lemonade and lemon tarts, respectively — by means of a generous donation from an old lemon tree in their back yard.

The pastor’s wife also told me, that when she was young and living in the Midwest, it always rained at noon on Good Friday. She said, that her mother told her, that God was crying for his son.

It was also my god-daughter’s birthday today, as well as my cat Calvin’s — making it easy to remember. Since Easter is not complete without colored eggs for me, I dyed some last night. Guess which one is his…

On a side note, as I sat in my back yard with a cup of coffee, a hummingbird came within just a few feet of me, and started chirping at me, leaving me dumbfounded. My son Patrick later told me on the phone, that my dad had instructed the hummingbird from heaven, to wish me a happy birthday.

Have a blessed week,

In Jesus name,

Matthias Leue

Holy Week

Geometric Palm LeavesToday was Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week. In the Lutheran churches I have attended here in California, they often use real palm leaves to decorate the church, something reserved for warm climates, unlike my native country, where the crocus and snow drops are still struggling to welcome Easter this year I’m told. In some years, depending on which date Easter falls on, the daffodils shine brightly in the sun for Easter in all their yellow, orange, and white exuberance. The literal translation from German for daffodil means Easter bell (Osterglocke).

The photo above, is of some palm leaves I had the privilege to photograph in Venezuela some years back. I love the symmetry of the leaves, and the soft light falling through them.

Palm Sunday is almost over. Now comes the walk to the cross of my Lord on Good Friday, and then the joyous Easter celebration of his resurrection on Sunday.

In Jesus name,

Matthias Leue