God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Choices

As we were finishing a short hike at Theodore Roosevelt NP, a couple standing at the parking area asked us if we realized we were being followed by a bison. We turned around and saw this guy not far behind us. We climbed a small hill and watched him walk by.

There continues to be stories in the news of people who think it’s OK to walk up to these animals and wind up being injured by them. And I do admit that they seem very mild manner when you see them walking by like this. However, I’m never tempted to get close to one. So what leads to the tragic error in judgment for those who wind up in the news?

I’m currently reading a book, The Whole Language by Gregory Boyle (Homeboy Industries). In it, he talks about the sad choices former gang members had made. Often his message is don’t judge but rather try to understand why choices are made. I often say “there but for the Grace of God go I”. I realize I have made plenty of bad choices without ever finding myself in a hopeless situation. If we are to learn to love others as God does, we need to stop seeing others as different than ourselves.

Standard
God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Wallowing

We saw quite a few bison at the Theodore Roosevelt NP. Even when not seeing them, we encountered plenty of evidence of bison. Lots of dung. Many downed posts – the bison like to rub against them. And an occasional circular bare spot in the vegetation as seen in this photo. This is where the bison roll on the ground, or wallow. It’s hard to believe an animal rolling on the ground could make such a large divot, even a large animal. We saw a few days later that many bison will wallow in the exact same spot, one right after another. From my reading, it seems that it is not entirely clear why bison do this. For pigs, it is a way to combat the heat (since pigs do not sweat). For bison, it may just be a way to remove bugs. Do bison know why they do it? Are they just “following the herd?”

How often do I do what others are doing without asking “why?”

Standard
God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

God’s Presence

This photo was taken on one of our last days at Yellowstone. When we arrived at this trail, we had to wait a few minutes because there were a large number of bison crossing the trail about where I was standing to take this picture. They are visible near the center of this photo.

There were a couple of times during our trip when bison crossing the road created a back up of cars. Close encounters with bison are not infrequent. In fact, I was surprised at how easy it was to observe them up close (from our car). They seem quite oblivious to the people and cars around them. Then you read reports about a bison attacking a car (or person) and you realize they not completely oblivious to our presence around them.

I think we are often like the bison – nearly oblivious to God’s presence around us. Occasionally, we do recognize God and can not help but react.

Standard