black berries and devils and angels

Day 229 “Lord,” he said, “if I have found favor in your eyes

There are luscious looking berries and fruits everywhere and part of growing up is learning what is good to eat and what is bad. I was walking today and saw these. The blackberries are wonderful and my son can gorge himself until he is looking like a black berry. On the other hand the Cuckoo’s pint or devils and angels are not to be eaten as they are poisonous.

Each plant has a use and as time goes by we are just starting to discover the uses for each plant. The cuckoo’s pint has been uses as a starch and the leaves can be eaten if prepared in a particular way, but caution must be shown, especially with the berries.

Many years back I used to forage for mushrooms and I ended up eating a death cap fungus. If you know you fungi, as I do now, this is perhaps one of the most dangerous as it is extremely poisonous, will lead to death if attention is not sort (that’s what my fungus encyclopaedia said!) and looks very similar in many ways to a normal mushroom. What happened that night is that I had the worst evening of pain in my life. It felt like someone pushing a spear through my body all night. Strangely enough I didn’t seek medical attention probably because I was curled up in agony on the floor and couldn’t get to tell anyone.

Obviously I survived and I see this as a key point in my life as I really did think an angel or something had saved my life. The morning came and the excruciating pain went.

Twenty years on and I still remember this night of pain and use it as a warning. But trying to tell my son about poisonous plants or trying to warn him about things seems hard work at times. There is one expression “it goes in one ear and out the other!”

But doesn’t God warn us about our sinful life on one day and the next, at least this seems to be me, I am doing exactly what God had warned me not to, and the consequences of that sin come back to bite me.

How quickly do we seem to forget the times that God has interceded to help us, and the next day I seem to be praying for God to show his presence in my life.

Exodus 34:9

“Lord,” he said, “if I have found favour in your eyes, then let the Lord go with us. Although this is a stiff-necked people, forgive our wickedness and our sin, and take us as your inheritance.”

Very often when I pray I feel like the stiff necked Israelites turning their back on God at every occasion. I read the old testament with wonder sometimes almost shouting at the page at the peoples very quick return to sin, and yet how far am I from this people.

And yet read the verse Exodus 34:9 again. If I have found favour? I feel that this generation is so blessed because we have God himself, our Lord Jesus Christ, saying these very words to His Father so that we may be clean. Jesus sacrificed Himself for us and this passage seems to echo what Jesus did when he arrived for his earthly ministry.

Isaiah 30:21 

And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, This is the way,

So if your day has been fraught with temptations, or seems far removed from God, then set your mind back on him and listen for that voice to tell you what direction you shall go. For have assurance that Jesus Christ is with us and the Holy Spirit is that still small voice guiding, giving us that moral compass in our daily life.

Dear Lord, you are an awesome God that I can not even compare you to anything.
Forgive us all our sins, and grow our faith in you.


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