Walking the Nature Trails
The path opens to a clearing larger than a football field. Waist high brome grasses sway slightly in a gentle waltz with the faint breeze. Nearby branches merely watch, too heavily laden with yellow-green hedge apples to dance. On the far side of the field lies a painter’s palette of trees just beginning to show their colors—green, yellow, orange, brown, and rust, accented by splashes of bright red sumac and dark tree trunks. Wildflowers once covered this field. Three and four-foot high dried stalks now fill the meadow, their seed heads white and full, ready to release millions of umbrella ribs to flower another field.
I risk a quick crossing of the muddy path to stand on the bridge and watch the swollen stream. My right foot sinks three inches into the soft black ooze, but I make it safely across. The recent rain has forced the creek out of its bed. Noisily it rushes through unfamiliar territory, over its former banks and around tree trunks, its strength rippling the mud-brown water, carrying foamy bubbles downstream. The rushing water rocks the dying trees, tipping them on their sides from the water’s force, but their roots hold firm against its assault. One tree reaches toward the flood, its green and yellow leaves bending toward the water like a girl bending over to wash her hair.
The rushing water lulls me into to a peaceful reverie. The surface ripples, like a cat flexing the muscles on its back. Every day responsibilities beckon me home. Reluctantly, I amble across the bridge, promising myself to return soon.
The peace, beauty, and serenity of God’s handiwork are just outside my front door to enjoy whenever I choose. How seldom I choose! It is the same way with God’s peace, love, wisdom, and power. It is there for me, whenever I choose to enjoy it. All I have to do is walk the path.
Lord, forgive me for those many times that my nearsighted eyes fail to see your grandeur. Open my eyes to behold your glory.
Amos 5:4b “Seek me and live.”