Wednesday, November 25, 2009
If you have read the previous blog you know about the elderly couple we met at Lake San Cristobal. They were charming, and we noticed they were headed in the same direction after the stop. We have wondered if they caught sight of this moose just a few miles down the road as we encountered fallen snow passing over the Continental Divide before heading to Creede.
The interesting thing is that, living in Texas, we seldom see snow. We miss its beauty, though not so much the scooping and driving. Growing up in Nebraska, I never thought I would be taking pictures of snow on our trips just because it was a beautiful oddity! Playing in the snow or photographing the glittering crystals on trees and hillsides makes me giddy.
As we rounded the corner past Lake San Cristobal, we found ourselves in a winter wonderland. We slowed down so I could photograph the small drifts and seedlings. As we resumed the drive I thought I saw a sillouette of a moose back in the trees. I yelled, "MOOSE! GO BACK!" My husband remarked, "I thought I saw it, too!" We were able to circle around and catch this lovely cow moose in the snow. I think this was the first time I photographed a moose in snow. What a gift!
Now, I must get to the point. We have seen millions of what we thought were bears on our travels, but they only turned out to be 'stump' bears; brown short stumps that we mistook for the real deal. We have seen bush deer, limb elk, and rock moose as well. After awhile, the eye gets trained, even from a fast moving car driven by a husband that is tired of stopping. He continues speeding along because I gave the wrong wording ("That's gorgeous!" does not equal "Stop, I want to take a picture!"). My eyes, ears, AND communication skills have improved on my journeys. We have an understanding that I need to say "STOP!" if I want him to do anything but agree with my commentary.
My friend Mike, who just passed, would often pray for heightened hearing, sight, and courage in me to capture God's love, glory, and essence in my photographs; that I would bear fruit in encouragement to others with the stories and pictures of travel through His stunning planet Earth. Thank you, Mike, for praying me into all those trips. Thank you, God, for giving me eyes to see and ears to hear. What a wonderful blessing that God has put heart's desire and opportunities in front of me to do this.
But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear.
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
This is Lake San Cristobal, the second largest natural lake in Colorado. It is a few miles south of Lake City, just before going over the Continental Divide. We stopped alongside another car, and came upon an elderly couple walking a small distance up the trail trying to get a better view of the lake. We chatted for a few moments and I continued up the trail as it narrowed and became much steeper. The view past the obstacles was stunning as the whole blue expanse became visible. I shouted back to my husband to ask permission to get their camera and take a shot of the vista farther up the mountain. They agreed and we were both tickled that we would be able to take these photographs home to share with others.
I thought about how sometimes we just do not have the stamina to go another step. Others in our lives are perhaps a step ahead in their wisdom and life lessons. They share with us, when we need their wisdom. They take our camera and get the shot for us. They can see the whole picture and speak into our lives accordingly. I am thankful for all the wonderful mentors I have had in my life. They encouraged me and literally saved my life at times. Likewise, I hope in ten or fifteen years when we can't get farther up the hiking trail, that some younger hikers will get the shot for us.
I love meeting other people along the beautiful arenas of wilderness. We are in the great natural cathedrals that instill in us the worship for the Creator and the love for those we meet along the path, though they be strangers. We are in the churches without walls, in love with our God.
Love God and love one another.
Friday, November 20, 2009
These photos were all taken of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison. The many stops at the rim of the Canyon were breathtaking. Then we took the steep incline down to the river. The grade was quite harrowing, and we met several deer along the roadside at dusk. The first two photos were taken at the base of the Canyon; the last two from the rim.
It is overwhelming, wonderful love that bubbles up in me when I acknowledge that the same hands that made this Canyon knit me together in my mother's womb. Neither decision was a mistake or accident, but fashioned by God out of dust. Amazing!!!
Thursday, November 19, 2009
I took this picture along the shore of Lake Louise in Canada several years ago. The sky was quite ashy because of some recent forest fires. This vista gave me a sense of peace and trust as I photographed the fireweed bent over the water from the shoreline. On the return trip a whole different view greeted us with clear skies, intense blue water, and peaks across the water. It was equally awesome, but the first had a greater sense of intimacy and private showing of God.
I believe that in heaven there will be no fear, no tears, no sickness. I miss my friend Mike today, but I take great comfort and joy in knowing he is well.
Rest in the Lord.
Monday, November 16, 2009
Sorry I have not posted for so long. But today, in memory of my prayer warrior and wonderful friend, I felt the need to post my thoughts. He died this afternoon after a battle with colon cancer and the following chemotherapy that left him unable to fight off any infections.
I saw him at the hospital before noon. I went to sing to him, but was not allowed in the room. I trust that his spirit received the song. It was one I wrote and he had heard me sing before. 'Peace I leave with You.'
All this I have spoken while still with you. But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not be afraid.
When I returned home to meet my daughter and new grand daughter, I got the news that he had passed. It did not take the ache away that Mike had died, but blowing into my grandbaby's tummy and eliciting a string of giggles was salve to my spirit. The inheritance and legacy of generations is amazing.
Looking at the autumn's loosing of seeds and the iced grasses wearing their first wintery coats, there is beauty in the passing of the seasons. One generation passes and another is born of the seed. The circle of life.
The grass fades, but the love of our God is forever. Blessings and great joy to my friend Mike for whom God has prepared a room. I know Mike has unspeakable joy in tossing the crowns at the feet of the one he served.