This year we’ve been blessed with many mantids. They are amazing to watch, from hatching to the laying of their own egg cases. And although I see mantids-to-butterflies as I see coyotes-to-rabbits, it’s equally interesting to watch the mantids hunting, and eating (in most cases).

Yesterday I saw two mantids on the same flower, eating the same butterfly, and swatting at each other. I don’t know if one mantid ended up eating the other later as well. But this morning I did find a new egg casing on the stem of a near by zinnia, tucked under a leaf.. a promise for next year. (I had the secret hope that mantids would eat tomato horn worms, but I have yet to see them eat them).

Seasons come and go. I await the Lord Jesus. Yet seeing new egg casings and young animals, and pregnant mamas, there is evidence of Life, His Testimony to Himself as Creator… and Author of Life.

Still, all of creation is awaiting the tearing away of this veneer of futility, awaiting the revelation of Life Himself in all things… bursting forth like the rising of the Son.

All things work together for good according to His purpose. Even these savage little beasties.


I looked up while sitting at my kitchen counter eating apple pie. (It was very good pie.) The view from my slightly lowered vantage point through the kitchen window was awe inspiring to me, the greatness of the sky and monsoon clouds proudly declaring God’s glory.

It was lovely to see the tip-tops of the cosmos visible high as the window ledge…. with water drops still gracing their petals. Small flowers against such a vast sky, yet their presence is declared in pronounced joy.

There are times where they are scampering with bumble bees and butterflies.

Glory days, the ending of summer into autumn.

Then a morning seeing this sunflower, the last one braving the season’s changes. It too, being very small, with a very large proclamation. Keep seeking the Face of the Son.

Even when you seem to be in the dark spaces, keep your face toward the Son. His Grace is Sufficient.


Every once in a while I get a good photo that is not increased by painting it. This I think, is one of them.

Every year Jack and his wife Jill, have a new crew to raise, this year and last, they had 3. They work very, very hard from nesting to feed those fast growing babes – babes that quickly get to be the same size as they are.

Jack has immense pride in his offspring, showing them love and adoration, faithfully feeding and fathering his young.

There comes the time when they encourage and train the young ravens, first in flight, in awareness, in feed and survival. Occasionally jumping out from the middle of the weaning children, he leads them into independence.

Please enjoy with me this moment I caught this morning.

It is also wonderful to note that Daddy and Mama are aware of their roles in life, and their faithfulness to each other and their young.

“Proud and Faithful Father” – Photograph – ©2022 Bohlender