Friday, April 17, 2015

Jewel # 213 (April 17, 2015)

imgres.jpg

“And they shall be Mine, saith the Lord
of hosts, in that day when I make 
up MY JEWELS.” 
(Malachi  3:17)

To my dear grandchildren,

The Awesome Tiger

“One generation shall praise Thy works to another,
and shall declare Thy might acts.”
(Psalm 145:4)

The graceful, muscular Asian jungle cat is more fierce and powerful than a lion.  Its bright fawn colouring is sharply marked with uneven black stripes.  No two animals have identical markings.  A tiger’s large head has rather small ears, and a special feature is its amber-coloured eyes, so outstanding that a rare and valuable gemstone with a similar design is called a “Tiger Eye.”  Long, yellow fangs and powerful legs and feet equipped with sharp claws are its main weapons for killing its food.

When fully grown, a male tiger may measure 10 feet or more from its nose to the tip of its tail and weigh 400 to 500 pounds.  A female weighs close to 300 pounds.  Their average life span is 11 to 15 years.

A mother tiger carries her kitten-sized cubs by grasping the loose skin over their necks with her teeth, just like a mother cat carries her kittens.  When the cubs are two months old, she trains them to hunt, swim and take care of themselves.  She is very loving and protective and often keeps the cubs with her until they are almost two years old.

A tiger usually hunts at night, but if very hungry, it becomes bold and hunts in the daylight.  The animals a tiger hunts are seldom aware of being stalked until, with a quick dash and great leap, the tiger attacks and makes the kill.  Tigers prefer to live and hunt alone, but at times two will work together if their quarry is an elephant, water buffalo or some other large animal.  After gorging on such a catch, neither needs to look for food again for several days.

The Creator has given tigers a well-camouflaged design, whether in the brush or thick grass of swamps or open plains.  Their ear-splitting roar can be heard for two miles.  Although they seldom harm humans, on occasion people have been terrified to see one suddenly appear out of nowhere and then are relieved to have it disappear just as silently and mysteriously.

Though ferocious, the tiger is part of God’s creation.  In disposing of weak, sickly animals that might spread disease, it plays an important role in the balance of nature, ordered by the Creator. “in whose hand is the life of every living thing (Job 12:10).

We look with wonder on His care over all living things, but we should consider the special care He gives to mankind.  King David said,“Give ear, all ye inhabitants of the world: both low and high, rich and poor, together”(Psalm 49:1-2).  Have you "given ear,”not only to His care, but to His loving invitation to accept everlasting life through faith in His Son,.0 the Lord Jesus Christ?

Love you all 
Grandpa

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

Jewel # 212 (April 8, 2015)

imgres.jpg     imgres.jpg
“And they shall be mine, saith the Lord of hosts, in that day when I make up MY JEWELS.”
(Malachi 3:17)

To my dear grandchildren,

A Big Fish

“The Lord is good to all: and His tender mercies are over all His works.”
(Psalm 145:9)

Large fish are fairly common in salty ocean waters, but not many are found in rivers, streams or lakes.  So when a big pike or salmon, weighing from 30 to 80 pounds, is caught by a freshwater fisherman, it makes a good story.

However, in South America there is a freshwater fish by the name of arapaima, which can grow more than twice as long as a man, but the ones usually caught are no longer than 10 feet and weigh around 250 pounds.  But that is still a big fish, isn’t it?  This one makes its home in several South American lakes, but most are in sluggish streams or swamps that are part of the Amazon River system, where large quantities of small fish provide ample food for their huge appetites.  Mail arapaimas keep eggs warm in their mouths.*

The arapaima’s body (except for its head) is covered with olive-green scales on the front part, with the colour turning to soft red toward the back and deep red before reaching its big tail.  It has a long, two foot fin atop its body, from the tail forward, and another one underneath the same size, from it tail to its stomach.  A strange thing about this fish is that it frequently needs a supply of fresh air, as the water in which it lives does not have enough oxygen for the needs of its big body.  So every 10 to 15 minutes, it rises to the top, opens its mouth above the surface and noisily inhales a big gulp of air.

Fishermen catch them in various ways - sometimes with a huge hook and line made out of strong rope, at other times using a net, or some prefer going after them with a bow and arrow or spearing them with a harpoon.  After catching one and hauling it out of the water, a fish this size is, of course, too big to carry on mountain trails in one piece.  So the natives cut them up into small pieces to take to their homes or to the markets.

This is a very popular food considered by many as good as trout or salmon.  But their tongues are too tough and rough for eating, so these are allowed to dry and harden and then used as files on the woodwork of their native homes.

This unusually large fish is just one more, among thousands of others, which reminds us of the Creator’s pleasure in making many varieties when they were brought forth on the fifth day of creation.

As our opening verse says, He always keeps a watchful eye on them, providing for all their needs.  But His thoughts toward every boy and girl  are even greater.  The Bible tells us, “The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; and He knoweth them that trust in Him” (Nahum 1:7).

Do you trust in Him?

Love you all
Grandpa