Snapshots & Whatnot: SWAMPED!

A few years ago my brother and I drove the Natchez Trace from Franklin, Tennessee to Natchez, Mississippi. We stopped along the way (visiting our precious niece Joy and her family @ French Camp, MS) and enjoyed many scenic opportunities.

It may be a tad weird, but one of my favorite Natchez Trace stopping spots was Cypress Swamp, MS. On a misty day it was eerie, but kinda cool. Not that I would want to be stuck there at night. (Forgot to ask if there are alligators. Probably, yes.)

Misty vibes @ Cypress Swamp

Swamps usually connote unpleasantness. It is, after all, where alligators thrive. Where entities like “Swamp Things” go about their frightening business. (There never seem to be scary movies about “Pond Things.”)

All tangled up, “Swamped!”

Swamps also tend to overwhelm, as in “I’m swamped with work.”

Sometimes things in our lives may seem a little creepy, scary even. (Freaky viruses? Paralyzed economies? No TP in the groceries?)

We can let what’s scary freak us out…

A creepy sighting @ Cypress Swamp

Or we can take a closer look.

Maybe what looked creepy from a distance is just a tree stump up close.

But, sometimes we let fear creep us out, immobilizing our forward momentum.

Stuck in the swamp

“Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark in the hopeless swamps of the not-quite, the not yet, and the not-at-all.” Ayn Rand

Swamps are not generally the nicest-smelling places

Swamps of stinkin’ thinkin’ leave us mired in doubt and despair, a place that doesn’t take us anywhere.

Stinkin’ thinkin’ like we are nothing nobodies. Nobody cares.

Why stay in that swamp? Get out of there!

“We are all people with souls, sparks of the Divine.” Henri Nouwen

Flowery ‘sparks of the Divine’ @ Cypress Swamp

The challenge when wading through the swamps of our lives is to never lose hope. If we look around, we might find blossoms of hope in the middle of what’s swamping us.

“Hope discovers what can be done, instead of grumbling about what cannot. Hope pushes ahead when it might be easy to quit. Hope opens doors where despair closes them.” James Keller, M.M.

Funky hope @ Cypress Swamp

Hoping in the midst of our swamps is not easy. Indeed, it’s downright hard – a tough thing to do when everything seems to be against you.

But, you are not alone. You do not need to be afraid.

“Do not fear for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name: you are mine. When you pass through the waters I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you…” (Isaiah 43:1-2)

Even if we can’t see where the path leads, hope keeps on going.

grace, peace & SWAMPED HOPE!

Virginia : )

“Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27)

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4 Responses to Snapshots & Whatnot: SWAMPED!

  1. Debbie says:

    I remember seeing lots of swamps when my son was little and we’d ride Amtrak clear down to Louisiana. Creepy places to see, especially at night. Your photos capture the spookiness, Virginia, but your words convey more hope — and right now, I’m clinging to hope!!

    • Virginia says:

      Swamps can be creepy places, but this swamp seemed creepy-cool. Must confess when I saw that eerie tree, thought it was a creature of some sort. Taking that pic, saw it was a tree stump! Debbie, I’m joining your “clinging to hope” club – otherwise the swamp of despair will swallow us! 🌟🙏🤗🙏🌟

  2. Michelle says:

    These trees are beautiful! When we go to the beach we have to go through a swamp to get to the house we stay in. I always love to look out over the water when we’re passing through to see what I can see. It’s interesting to me!

    • Virginia says:

      There’s a massive swamp between Va. Beach & Elizabeth City (NC) we drove by many times when my oldest sis lived in EC. It seemed more green & dismal (Its name: The Great Dismal Swamp) than this one in MS. But trees are cool wherever they may be! Blessings to you, Michelle! 🌿☀️🤗☀️🌿

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