Wednesday, October 24, 2007

"In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks." ~John Muir

Walking along a trail covered with dry, colorful leaves, listening to the crunch of each step and the birds alerting the forest to me, the intruder, surrounded by vivid multicolored trees, I find it hard to worry about the daily predicaments I feel I must solve and conquer in my everyday life. Here in amongst nature I am at ease, my mind is clear, I am inspired. My focus is on each step I take as rocks and roots along the trail can trip me up and steal my joy. I am sweating, my heart rate is up, I am breathing heavily and yet I move on…with joy in my heart. It was climbing up the old rocky creek bed at Big Hill that I made the connection…hiking builds character. The hard work is usually always rewarded in the end with a beautiful scene unable to be experienced unless I had worked hard to get there. I am physically stronger because of it…I am more experienced…it helps me practice preparedness…and mentally/emotionally I am inspired because of it. It’s an exercise in fortitude that enhances my everyday life.

Life can hit you with difficult relationships, difficult jobs, illnesses, etc…that if you work through them…watching out for those rocks and roots along the way that can trip you up…and keep moving through them, there is always a “pearl” at the end that makes it worth your time and effort. The pearl may be only the satisfaction of getting through the rough time. Like Molly exclaimed at the end our five mile hike a few weeks ago, “Mimi, you wore me out more than my gym teacher does!” Smiling really big and with a bit of puffiness she added, “And I feel really good about it!” Sticking to the task, pushing ourselves past what we think we can do creates stamina in us…gives us a determination that we can use in other areas when it is called for.

This hike at Big Hill was just William and me. We talked about hiking and how it relates to our walk through life.
And it was good.

I also reminded him of what he and my other children had heard so many times before…that I have one painting that is in my mind that I wish I had the skills to paint. It has been mental picture in my head for so many years. I can see it plain as day. It is an open area where there are several trees up close and the background is hills of trees but blurred…like a 3D picture, the focus is on just the three trees in the picture. Two of the trees have a touch of color on them, at the top and spreading down the ends of the branches. The third tree is still green but there are a few leaves turning red at the top. You can see two finger of God’s hand holding a normal size bucket of paint…it looks so small in between God’s fingers. The paint can is being held in such a way it is dripping drops of red paint onto the tree. I guess it was my childish thinking of years past of how the leaves turned color in the fall. I would paint that…if I could.

Then we talk about why the leaves truly turn. The science of it. Some people say science makes them believe there is no God. I find that science makes me more of a believer in an awesome, intricate designer…Just think the tree has a system much like the blood system we as humans have. Theirs is sap, ours is blood…either way, and it’s a life sustaining fluid that runs through the veins of each. When it is that perfect time, the tree starts shutting down its supply of sap. The tops of the trees, along with the edges of the longest branches began to turn color. Much like your finger would if you cut the circulation off from it. The leaves eventually die and fall off.

Now what makes me a believer in an intricate designer is that the same system is used in trees, people, animals, plants and so on…Anyone knows that when something is created the creator will reuse their best plan and make other changes but stick to the one ingenious part that needs no change. See, I think there is no way this could just happen…that the tree…and the human have the same system…life sustaining fluid running through a circulatory system.

I find it awesome…not only that the God I chose to believe in is a master designer…but that he chose to use the same design with us as He did the tree…even has a sense of humor, too, as our circulatory system gets older and doesn’t run as good, so do humans mark the seasons just as trees do…our hair turns gray, and even falls out…but that’s just a side note…you might not find that funny like I do…However, the tree’s sap flow is set up according to seasons and with each fall comes a dead and dreary winter…that evidently brings a brighter day as it turns to spring. Here I could get into the seasons of life…but I won’t. I do want to point out that again, the master planner who provides the trees to clean the air and provide oxygen…even sets into existence a plan to continue to clean the air and keep oxygen during the leafless winter weather…evergreens…just what the Doctor ordered.

Hope I haven’t lost you…the whole hike was not spent in deep discussion…As I hiked along in deep thought…William sporting his black rain poncho took on the role of a wraith (a tall, humanoid figure shrouded in a black cloak). He advised me as a wraith he moved like a spirit through the woods quickly. His only fear was the dragons that would be in the openings. As we stood on overlooks and the wind was blowing furiously. I was certain not to stand close to the edge as I might be blown off. The wind was whipping my rain poncho so hard I felt like a kite. I looked over at William and he was still a wraith. The wind was not blowing him…he was the wind.

FYI-You can double click on the photos to have a better view of Fall at Big Hill in Berea, KY


LizzyBee said...

Beautiful pictures, you are such an excellent photographer!

Fancy said...

What a beautiful day!!

Thanks for sharing.