Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Jewel # 256 (Aug. 2, 2016)

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“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 Graceful Springbok

“O Lord . . . Thou hast created all things, and for 
Thy pleasure they are and were created.”
(Revelation 4:11)  

Springboks are one of the most graceful members of the antelope family.  They live on the prairies of Africa where they share the friendly company of zebras, giraffes, wildebeest and many others.  However, they are sometimes victims of hungry lions that capture them by creeping up unseen and then making a sudden leap before there is opportunity to escape.  Wild dogs are also among their enemies, but the dogs usually pick out the sick, old, or very young that has wandered away from the herd.

Springboks are well named, for one of the features that helps identify them is their practice of suddenly springing high in the air.  They appear to do this often just for the fun of it.  They seem to be one of the Creator’s “happy to be alive” animals.  It is a lovely sight to see them leaping this way on their long and thin but strong legs.

Springboks are delicately coloured animals, appearing to wear a tan cape over their backs and down the outsides of their legs.  The remainder of their bodies is pure white.  Crowning their heads is a pair of horns.  These horns extend for about 18 inches from their heads and gently curve forward at the top.  Springboks have appealing white faces with stripes between the eyes and nose, as if skillfully drawn with soft crayons, large deer-like eyes and long, erect ears.

These animals, which do not search out shade while browsing, seem to prefer the open country with its extremely hot sunshine.  Their usual food is the wild grasses of the prairie, but when these are hard to find, they will substitute leaves and tender parts of shrubs and will even eat roots dug out of the ground with their sharp horns.

In times of drought and when food runs low, thousands together make long migrations to greener pastures.

We might ask, “How do they know where to go and how do they know when to return?”  Those who have studied their ways cannot answer these questions, but to us who know of the Creator’s care over all living things, it is not difficult to realize that He is the One who directs them to go and gives them the sense when it is time to return to their native land.

Several Bible verses declare this care so well: “These wait all upon Thee; that Thou mayest give them their food in due season.  That Thou givest them they gather:  Thou openest Thine hand, they are filled with good” (Psalm 104:27-28).

Have you thanked Him that His same loving hand is stretched out for you too?  
He invites every boy and girl to trust in Him and know Him as their loving and very own Saviour. 

Love you all,
Grandpa         

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