Just Look Up

Every time I feel lost in this new place, I just look up.

An enormous mountain rises so high that you can see it no matter where you are.  When you observe it, you immediately reorient.  You suddenly know which direction to go. 

I find myself desperate for that mountain.  With every turn in the car, I’m shifting in my seat, craning my neck to find it.  And then I relax.  “This is the right way,” I say.  I don’t even need street names anymore.  I just drive on with that mountain beside me, and I know I’ll make it home.

I’ll remember the simplicity of looking up to find a mountain as I continue in this journey of faith.  
Journal:  What in my life has been a fixed mountain for me?


An Unexpected Photography Lesson

I’m hiking in snow in the middle of June.

It’s actually not even that cold (as you can see from our shorts).

The landscape presents an unexpected photography challenge for me.  Normally, I focus on the very small when I take photos.  But not today.  The view nearly overwhelms me, and I have no choice but to change the settings on my camera and try to capture it all in my lens.

I snap the photos, but it doesn’t feel as satisfying for some reason.  It is beautiful and majestic, but something is missing.  Then I notice this:  While all the adults gaze at the mountains, the children turn their attention to the chipmunks on the trail.  Every child screams in delight at these little creatures running around our feet. 

Why do children find the small thing to delight in?  I follow their lead and search the ground for beauty.  I discover mountain wildflowers growing in places where the snow had melted.  The flower, held up against the majesty of the mountains, contains equal beauty–equal awe–for me. 

I remember not to limit awe to those things large in scope and grand in appearance.  I will have to come down from this mountaintop and live in the valley.  But I will not leave my wonder and awe up there.

Journal:  What small thing created awe in me today?


Humbled by Mountains

When you drive into Colorado, you’ll soon discern the faint outline of the Rocky Mountains.  It’s another source of the sublime:  mountains so huge that you think you’re looking into the clouds instead of the white peaks of a mountain range. 

First you feel small in the expanse of the Kansas praire.  Then you feel diminished by the height of the Colorado moutains.  Either horizon humbles you. 

We are so very tiny in this great universe.  And yet we know and are known by God.  It’s a wonder that keeps me living with flair.  It’s a sublime truth I don’t want to forget for a single day of my life.

We finally set up our little apartment here in Colorado.  My husband will take classes, and I’ll be writing and teaching others how to write with flair.   With these huge mountains offering a great hug every morning, I can hardly forget the presence and power available to me. 

Journal:  Do you ever feel humbled by something in nature?