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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...

Secret Identity

Apr. 14, 2013

You stoop down to examine an insect on a plant and discover it is just a flower. You touch a twig on a tree, and it moves. What’s going on? Meet nature’s masters of disguise. Like comic book superheroes, many living things have secret identities. Some try to look like something they’re not. Others blend in so well with their surroundings they are practically invisible. Consider these tricksters of the natural world:

• The fly orchid is a flower that looks so much like a fly you might be tempted to shoo it away. It appears to have wings, a head and antennas. This clever disguise attracts real flies, which spread pollen so more fly orchids can grow.

• The stick insect lives in trees and munches on leaves. But if it isn’t careful, it could become a meal itself. Not to worry. The stick insect is hard to spot since it looks exactly like a twig. When a predator is near, the sneaky little creature even acts like a stick. It can stay put for hours, swaying like a tiny limb blowing in the breeze.

• The leaf-tailed gecko of Madagascar is also good at hiding in trees. Some species look like palm fronds. Others are similar to tree bark, with limbs that resemble twigs. Still others seem like leaves, complete with funny “leaf” tails.

• Lithops plants are sometimes called living stones. They grow in rocky desert areas and look like the stones around them. That way they can avoid being eaten by animals searching for food and water.

When Esther first became queen of Persia, her cousin Mordecai told her not to reveal her true identity as a Jew. Esther followed Mordecai’s advice and trusted God. When Esther’s husband, the king, threatened to hurt the Jewish people, Mordecai and Esther agreed it was time to reveal the truth. Risking her own safety, the queen courageously spoke up.

With the Lord’s help, Esther saved God’s people. The Book of Esther tells this amazing story, and is short enough for you to read quite easily in one sitting.

Thankfully, you don’t have to keep your relationship with God a secret. In fact, the Lord wants you to tell people about Jesus. He will give you the courage to share His truth with others.

“Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:16, NIV).

By Christina Quick

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