Thursday, January 08, 2009

The Shady Side Of Things


  1. Full of shade; shaded.
  2. Casting shade: a shady grove.
  3. Quiet, dark, or concealed; hidden.

As we walked, my friend and I, we happened upon a small grove of mushrooms on the side of the road. They were remarkable in that they were colorful, and perfectly formed, as if they had been extracted from a children's picture book, or Alice's Wonderland. In all my Mississippi years, I could not recall ever seeing a mushroom in such pristine condition, so full of character.

This caused us to pause and take a closer look. (A bit of a comical sight to passersby, I am certain. A grown woman, on her knees, then, almost laying flat to the ground, to take an up-close gander at the fungus before her - surrounded by two babies in strollers, a five year old, and another adult.)

I poked and prodded, fascinated by what my eyes were viewing. Even the underbelly of this umbrella'd cap was gorgeous! Yet I was disgruntled at myself: I'd left my camera at home. Who knew I'd happen across such a spectacular sight? My normal preparedness mode had been tossed to the wayside, and here I stood, having failed miserably at my preparations' intent. :sigh:

Putting myself aright, we continued on our journey, and, upon returning to the homestead, I scooped up a reference manual or two, looking for any information on the genre of fungi I'd seen. Information was scarce at best; vague, and unfruitful for my inquiring mind. A quick google search net nearly the same amount of information - except for one niggling data item: the only photo I could find that looked remarkably similar to the 'shroom I'd just handled ~ was listed as poisonous.

E - gads!

Could that really be true? I'd not heard anyone discuss poisonous mushrooms in the Deep South. The bane of our existence rallied around the Red Ant population - swarms of which have the potential to bring about demise, or otherwise (and in a general and much more likely scenario) leave one with painful blisters where the little cronies tend to leave their teeth marks.

I didn't know what to think, and had no knowledgeable person to turn to to ask.

Days passed.

Walking yesterday, I spotted a lone mushroom in a yard quite early in the trek. This time, I did not fail to obtain a photographic spy at the rubbery looking thing - including the underbelly . . .the shady side, if you will.

In all it's glory, if a mushroom can be said to have a glory, it stood proud in the outcroppings where it had emerged from its' bed of birth.

What can be said, then, of the little mushroom that hides a secret? That entices one to draw near to take a closer look, only to snare it's victim upon fatal ingestion? The spiritual parallel can be made: there is an escape route from the shady side of life:

When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; Discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep
thee: To deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things; Who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness; Who rejoice to do evil, and delight in the frowardness of the wicked; Whose ways are crooked, and they froward in their paths: To deliver thee from the strange woman, even from the stranger which flattereth with her words; Which forsaketh the guide of her youth, and forgetteth the covenant of her God. For her house inclineth unto death, and her paths unto the dead. Proverbs 2:10-18

Inquiring of the Lord for His wisdom is a beneficial endeavor. With His light, with His instruction, one can gainfully employ wisdom to avoid the pitfalls that accompany our sojourn here.

Today, if you are feeling enticed by something pretty on the wayside, I pray the Lord's wisdom to guide you.

Refrain from the shady side.

Choose Life.


Dawn Sodini said...

Mia was excited to hear what you had written today. I wonder does "froward" have the same meaning as "forward"? These Bible translations use words I am not accustomed to.

Sorry I didn't think about mentioning how slow my job can be at times last night.

~ Angi :) said...

Hey, great question on the words, Dawn: forward and froward are two different things entirely.

fro·ward (frwrd, -rd)
Stubbornly contrary and disobedient; obstinate.

and forward as you were thinking of it:

a. Ardently inclined; eager.
b. Lacking restraint or modesty; presumptuous or bold

They are close, but one can be forward without being froward, or disobedient and stubborn. See the difference?

As for the specifics of the word as used in Proverbs 8 - the hebrew word means to twist in deceit or craftiness; to act perversely or deceitfully.

So, the context is that wisdom (if we heed her voice) will keep us from those who walk in a manner such as to be deceitful toward others.

Wendy said...

I'm diggin' on the Spirtual parallel,

I must tell you that Carson and I have an odd appreciation of mushrooms. We love to watch them grow, often astonished at just how quickly they spring out of the ground. When they get to what looks to be their largest possible size we have been known to pick them from the ground and tear them apart examining all of their delicate wonder.

I'm just sharin' ;-)

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