God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Year End

Sunset at Lily Lake, Estes Park, CO

This seemed like a good photo to reflect on the end of 2021. It was a difficult year in many ways for many people. Optimism was high during the summer; a survey showed almost 90% of Americans thought that things were getting better. Then Delta hit. Now Omicron. I’m sure many are wondering if things will ever be “normal” again.

I don’t have an answer to that question. I used to be fond of saying “the more things change, the more they stay the same.” I never felt that way in 2021. Maybe we’ll get to that point in 2022. I do know that “God is the same yesterday, today, and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8)

God in all things, Photography, Prayer, Scenery

O Radiant Dawn

O Wisdom of our God Most High,

guiding creation with power and love:

come to teach us the path of knowledge!

O Leader of the House of Israel,

giver of the Law to Moses on Sinai:

come to rescue us with your mighty power!

O Root of Jesse’s stem,

sign of God’s love for all his people:

come to save us without delay!

O Key of David,

opening the gates of God’s eternal Kingdom:

come and free the prisoners of darkness!

O Radiant Dawn,

splendor of eternal light, sun of justice:

come and shine on those who dwell in darkness and in the

shadow of death.

O King of all nations and keystone of the Church:

come and save man, whom you formed from the dust!

O Emmanuel, our King and Giver of Law:

come to save us, Lord our God!

God in all things, Photography, Prayer, Scenery, Travel


Great Sand Dunes NP

Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How inscrutable are his judgments and how unsearchable God’s ways! “For who has known the mind of the Lord / or who has been God’s counselor?” “Or who has given God anything that he may be repaid?” For from God and through God and for God are all things. To God be glory forever. Rom 11:33-36

God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel


Another great reminder of the impact of perspective. This photo was taken from near the top of one of the higher dunes in Great Sand Dunes NP. You can get an idea of the size of the dunes by zooming in to see people hiking across the ridge in the middle right of the photo. It is harder to get an appreciation of how steep these slopes are. For that, you really need to hike up them. Truly experience them.

God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel


This is a photo of Great Sand Dunes NP in Colorado (seen in the distance). It is an amazing landscape with a fascinating geologic history. This valley was once covered by a lake. Sediment from the surrounding mountains filled the valley and the lake receded. Exposed sand was blown by the predominant southwest winds toward the Sangre de Cristos mountains, but during storms the winds blow back toward the valley. These opposing winds cause the dunes to grow higher and higher. Small dunes continue to form in the surrounding sand and migrate across grasslands, joining the main dunefield. Some of these migrating dunes become covered by grasses and shrubs and stop migrating.

There are multiple terms we could use for the stabilizing influences in our lives: rock (on which we stand) and anchor (for our boat in a storm) come immediately to mind. I guess we can add the grass and shrubs (for our sand dune).

God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Garden of the Gods, Colorado Springs

These formations were first called “Garden of the Gods” by a surveyor, Rufus Cable, in 1859. These sandstone formations began as the remnants of an ancient mountain range. Over time, the mountains crumbled into a fine sediment. The sediment was compacted into layers of sandstone. As the current Rockies were being formed, the Garden of the Gods was pushed up along a fault line.

It seems misguided, the thought that there was a particular place “the gods” could be found. For we know that God is everywhere, all the time.

God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel


This is the Toklat River in Denali NP. It is a good example of a braided river, which we saw many of in Alaska. Braided streams tend to occur in rivers carrying a large amount of of coarse sediment. They are also associated with rivers that experience regular surges in the amount of water being carried.

Sounds like a great metaphor for what we should do in life: carry along good things we experience and deposit them for others to enjoy.

God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

The Bridge

This is a photo of the footbridge crossing the Savage River in Denali NP. There is a scenic trail that goes for nearly one mile on one side of the river. This bridge allows you to cross the river to return on the other side of the river. As you can tell from the photo, this is a fairly nice bridge. And this is definitely not a river most people would cross if there was no bridge. At yet, it is easy to take a bridge like this for granted. Climbing up the hill made me more appreciative of it.

So often, a small change in perspective can give us a new appreciation for things (and people) in our lives.