Tag: design

Butt seriously, folks

We need some levity

This is what I see daily on the lake below our balcony. It is so funny to watch these bobbing bottoms on the surface of the water and then see some of them dive own to grab their meal.

I studied the anatomy of those birds to understand how and why they play “butts up” with intent to share here. But in that process, it seemed way more fun to look at other animal butts and their unique designs and uses.

Why? Because we need some levity in these days.

Bums and their designs are serious business. There is nothing by accident about bottoms in the animal kingdom.

For example, consider the Skipper caterpillars. These guys have a defensive tool called “scat firing”. When they are attacked, they launch poop at the enemy at speeds of 1.3 meters per second. That poo deters it’s main predator, the paper wasp, who is attracted by the odor of the poo.

Butt seriously… wow!

Maybe you’ve heard of the sea cucumbers bum. I’ve held many, but after learning this, that will probably stop. When they are in attack mode, they contract their bodies and eject their internal organs out of their anuses onto predators, often entangling them them in toxic fluid strands. YUCK! No worries about their loss tho’, because within six to ten weeks the thrown organs will regenerate. Crazy right?

Butt seriously…

Here’s a weird one and he lives on you, on your face! He is the face mite – Demodex folliculorum. This guy doesn’t even have a butt. None. Not at all. He eats up your dead skin cells which then stays in his large gut cells. Then after his sixteen day life span, he dies and releases his waste onto our faces once he disintegrates. I’d bet you’re touching you face right now.

A favorite of mine has even earned the nick name “bum breather” – he is the Fitzroy River turtle. This turtle can stay underwater for up tp three weeks without having to take in air through nostrils like other turtles. Why? Because his cloaca/anus extracts 41% more Oxygen thus allowing longer underwater stays. He breathes through his bum.

How bout wombats? They live mostly underground and have an amazing security system at their door. Their backside. It is used to block its burrow to protect itself from predators. It’s bum is super tough, filled with cartilage which sorta makes it like an armored car. His powerful buttocks is used as a weapon and can smash the skull of it enemy into the walls or roof of its burrow. Violent, ouch.

Just one more, giraffes. I used to collect them, especially after having been in Kenya and seeing them in their natural habitat. Who doesn’t love them? Long necks, elegant stride, beautiful colors. But what about their butts? Giraffes twist themselves into what looks to us like uncomfortable positions when they are ready to sleep. They do this to use their bum as a pillow. Yuppers. They actually rest their head on their bottom to sleep their 30 minutes a day.

Butt seriously, folks.

Time and interest don’t permit me to speak of disappearing butts, filtering sand bums, propelling bottoms, or detaching bums. But they are there.

Think about it. Shake your head in wonder. Marvel at the design and purpose in each of these. Such a small, seemingly insignificant body part – the bum. Yet, miraculously engineered, assembled and installed in each living creature. (well almost all)

But seriously, folks,

All things work together for good…”

And aren’t you glad they do?

Cheers to you.

The Mother’s Matrix

Sunday Sermon 5.9.20

This weekend, for many, we celebrate Mother’s Day, and by just walking into a grocery store we see that is obvious.

But I would like to take this time to drill down into a slice of Mother’s day, that may not be so obvious. It begins with a story.

There was once a woman who found herself surrounded by a disorganized throng of people, pressing in to see Jesus. In the midst of that crowd, she lifted up her voice and yelled out, “Happy and blessed is the womb or matrix that bore, carried you.” Luke 11:27 (I have transliterated this verse according to the original Greek word meanings.)

This crowd scene and the woman’s yelling out a blessing on Jesus’ mother seems kind of crazy, and a strange thing to blurt out in this particular setting. Yet, it’s significance cannot be overstated or lost.

The focus was on blessing the one who gave birth to Jesus. Why?

Let’s review what matrix means –

” Matrix – the environment or material in which something develops.”

Oxford Dictionary

The cry of this text is for us to see that no matter the environment or material of our birth, upbringing and nurture (or lack of it) it is blessed. It is by design. It is by mercy. It is by purpose. It is not by mistake. Everything surrounding your birth was perfectly aligned to bring you into the world into that situation to be and develop into the you that you are today.

It is the mother’s matrix.

Each of us were born into a situation by a mother. Period. We all share that.

It matters not whether the situation was good or bad. Whether we were raised by a present mother or absent mother. Adopted or surrogate mother. Abusive or affectionate mother. Nuclear family. Single parent family. Mixed family. Incestuous family. Imperfect, healthy, godly, evil, rich, or poor, family. Abandoned, embraced, loved, mocked, nurtured or neglected.

The situation into which you were born, by the mother that bore you is blessed. Not because it was a good situation but because that situation and that mother gave birth to YOU! And you were PLANNED.

Don’t believe me? Take a look at some examples of what I am talking about.

  • Eve, in a nuclear family, bore 2 sons who lived in anger and animosity toward one another and the one eventually killed the other. A “perfect family” produced killing.
  • Hagar – in a runaway, abusive family, yet, in her misery bore Ishmael, a great and powerful people
  • Lot’s 2 daughters -an incestuous family, both daughter’s bore sons who became great nations
  • Rebekah, a miracle pregnancy, bore twins boys, Jacob & Esau, who fulfilled God’s promises
  • Israel, who had 4 mothers ( Leah, Bilhah, Zilpah, Rachel) to his 12 children. Talk about a mixed family! With issues galore! And what a blessing came from those 12 kids and their upbringing in that crazy, mixed up family.
  • Elizabeth, a old, barren woman who bore John the Baptist!
  • Pharaoh’s daughter, an adoptive mother, who raised Moses
  • King David’s mother, a scorned and mocked mother who raised her son in shame and ridicule from siblings. (read Psalm 69, it is so sad!) Yet, David became a man after God’s own heart.

There are so many more stories, of other mother’s matrix and the amazing outcomes in spite of, (or shall we say because of ) the environment into which their child(ren) was raised.

Look, too, at the women who actually are listed by name in Jesus’ genealogy, which generally lists only men – Tamar, Rahab, Ruth, Bathsheba and Mary.

You see, the situation into which you were born, and the woman who bore you are blessed. Without that environment or building material for the structure of your life, you wouldn’t be the person you are now. Let’s be real, there are probably things we wished would have been different, perhaps a lot of things and maybe even everything. But that would truly change who we are.

There is nothing that cannot be healed, used, strengthened, improved upon and built on in our past. There is nothing that is useless or wasted. We are all still in process on this road of life and the broken pieces are being mended. We are being made whole.

But this weekend, I truly would love for you to be encouraged that although imperfect, you are exactly who God designed you to be. He has used everything in your past, including your mother, and that situation to mold you and bless you.

That is why, I believe the story we started with, in Luke 11 is there. To make obvious to us, this slice of the Mother’s Martix.

So I will say to YOU, Blessed and happy is the womb or matrix that bore YOU, for it made you the remarkable human that you are today. You are blessed!

Cheers you, and your mother.