What can I say: good friends, amazing environment, fantastic days, a joy to make pictures. If you are out for a luxurious holiday, do not go there: no cell phone, no phone, no electricity, no tab water unless you collect it for yourself. It was amazing walking around these two beautiful lakes. Great walks that remind you again how precious it is to be able to let your young boys enjoy this kind of environment. It is also here where I realized and was awed with God‘s Creation (with a capital C). It was here where I sensed God’s presence more than in a long time.
1 I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
where does my help come from?
2 My help comes from the LORD,
the Maker of heaven and earth.
Now don’t get me wrong. I do not understand this as David expecting help typo come from the particular mountains he is looking at at the time he wrote this Psalm. No, those mountains; the scenery remind him of the grandeur, the majesty of creation and he is reminded of the knowledge that the Creator will be his helper, guide, comforter, as we can read in the later verses of this beautiful Psalm.
And while we all remember David as the King that brought the Ark back to the tabernacle of David, the man after God’s heart, the man who truly counted on God’s protection when he went into battle with Goliath, I suddenly realized how instrumental his humble beginnings must have been. Here’s the shepherd that spend all this days and nights out in nature, with his sheep, some food, drink and a harp and while that may not seem much to many of us today, it gave him a chance to actually spend quality time with God without all the distractions of daily life; to develop a relationship. It is here where he learned about God looking after His children, and how much protection was needed for there must have been wild animals around. In all the harshness of his life, it was here where David learned what it means to be in his presence and to be a good child of the Almighty Father, the Father that looks after us if we are willing to open the door to our hearts. All these were things flowing through my mind when walking around there in the presence of friends, and my lovely family. Definitely a place to go not just for a nice (little or big) holiday bit also a place to reconnect with God. The scenery, the majesty of it, the skies at night, even the walkways remind you of how much your faith is a big journey, how easy it is to get of the path and what majesty you miss out on when you stray away. Anyway I did.
When we arrived at the set out destination the weather was not particularly inviting. And here in the mountains it seemed even worse that below on the plains. Strong wind seem to be particularly more severe when they blow through the valleys in the mountains.
In awe is all I could say. It was freezing (6 degrees Celcius is not fitting for a summer’s day) and yet was I glad to have gone out in the rain and wind.
Most of all I was reminded that first night of what a “One tree hill” means in terms of majestic scenes.
There is beauty even on a bad day if you are willing to see it. And is it not like that with our Christian lives as well. It is certainly no guarantee for a trouble free life, but that does not mean that there is no beauty in it even in times of trouble, or hardship. The tree reminded of the importance of standing tall even if it feels that you are sailing against the winds. The tide will change.
And so it did the next day, all cleared up at least later in the day opening up the real beauty of the surroundings. A walk around Lake Clearwater left me even more amazed.
The tracks around the lakes were nice. A stiff walk if you are not used to it, but well worth the effort. When you are witnessing secnes such as below, you quickly forget that you are tired. Too much to be distracted by.
In Matthew 7:14 we read:
…narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
I was painfully reminded of this verse when not long after the point where this picture was taken: we climbed over a style, tried to pick up the trail and lost we were. If we had only stayed on that track that was laid out before us, we would have been all right. But no, due to our own doubts we got lost. We thought we knew better and ended up getting lost, only get across the lake again once we reestablished our ‘faith’ in the track that was laid out for us.
What blew me away most of all probably was the amazing sunset over Lake Camp. What an amazing scenery and Psalm 8 springs to mind:
1 LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory in the heavens…
3 When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,
4 what is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?
What’s left here for me to say is that I guess we all feel at times as if God is no longer present in our lives. I know it felt like that for me after the ‘busy season’ with all this hassle about … well … stuff. The best part about places like this is the absence of facilities. It means you will have to do simple whether you like it or not. That also means NO or HARDLY ANY DISTRACTIONS and what a joy that is.
We look at David, a man after God’s own heart. I realize now the importance of his humble beginnings. Man did he have an opportunity to have time out with God on a daily basis, herding his sheep, out alone under the stars with nothing but his sheep, his harp and … God! If there is any way to reconnect with God, I would imagine it to be in the mountains, alone under in this majestic scenery. I know for sure it worked for me. The only thing I regret is that I did not take out my guitar to play for my Father under the stars. Next time I will. Far from perfect but back on track again.
More pictures to follow soon here