The time came for the Festival of Dedication in Jerusalem. It was winter, and Jesus was in the temple, walking in the covered porch named for Solomon. The Jewish opposition circled around him and asked, “How long will you test our patience? If you are the Christ, tell us plainly.” Jesus answered, “I have told you, but you don’t believe. The works I do in my Father’s name testify about me, but you don’t believe because you don’t belong to my sheep. My sheep listen to my voice. I know them and they follow me. I give them eternal life. They will never die, and no one will snatch them from my hand.
But the LORD said to Samuel, "Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart."
God is our refuge and strength, an ever present help in trouble, Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.
Laugh, and the world laughs with you;
Weep, and you weep alone.
For the sad old earth must borrow its mirth,
But has trouble enough of its own.
Sing, and the hills will answer;
Sigh, it is lost on the air.
The echoes bound to a joyful sound,
But shrink from voicing care.
Rejoice, and men will seek you;
Grieve, and they turn and go.
They want full measure of all your pleasure,
But they do not need your woe.
Be glad, and your friends are many;
Be sad, and you lose them all.
There are none to decline your nectared wine,
But alone you must drink life's gall.
Feast, and your halls are crowded;
Fast, and the world goes by.
Succeed and give, and it helps you live,
But no man can help you die.
There is room in the halls of pleasure
For a long and lordly train,
But one by one we must all file on
Through the narrow aisles of pain.
If I had a ranch, Paradise is the place I would want to be. Surrounded by mountains with beauty all around. It is a wonderful scenic drive from Queenstown and a getaway from the tourist and traffic congestion. Paradise is a rural locality in the Otago region of the South Island of New Zealand. It lies on the eastern side of the Dart River at the head of Lake Wakatipu, close to the settlement of Glenorchy and 45 minute drive from Queenstown.
You ask me why I dwell in the green mountain; I smile and make no reply for my heart is free of care. As the peach-blossom flows down stream and is gone into the unknown, I have a world apart that is not among men.
I finally found Paradise and I had to travel across the earth to find it in the South Island of New Zealand! This is the home of Beorn the "skin-changer". In "The Hobbit" Beorn is a fictional character created by J. R. R. Tolkien. He appears in The Hobbit as a "skin-changer", a man who could assume the appearance of a great black bear. In The Hobbit film trilogy, Beorn is portrayed by Mikael Persbrandt in the films The Desolation of Smaug and The Battle of the Five Armies.
I took a Jeep Safari tour of the locations where the film was made around Queenstown. The jeep's name was Thorin, son of Thráin, son of Thrór, King under the Mountain. The tour guide was very knowledgeable and we had a tea party in the forest a few miles down the road from Beorn's house. It was an Hobbit "Adventure!"