God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Adventure

This photo was taken during our February trip to the New River National Park. We like taking a trip in February to celebrate our anniversary. In recent years, it has been a long weekend hiking. Unfortunately, travel in the Midwest during February leaves the potential for snow/ice. The day before this photo, we got rain, freezing rain, then snow at the end of our hike. This ice was from a winter storm days earlier, and made this section of trail somewhat treacherous – both the footing and the falling ice. We like to think of ourselves as adventurous but definitely not risk takers.

It is interesting how often in the Bible God calls individuals to be leaders when they do not think of themselves as adventurous or risk takers (or leaders).

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God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Something New

This photo was taken during our visit to New River National Park this February. It was a rainy weekend and the creeks were definitely swollen. This is a view of Pinch Creek (on the left) feeding into Glade Creek as it makes it’s way down to the New River.

I am struck by the contrast in the color of the water between the two creeks. And the line in the water dividing them. With a recently married son, I can’t help but think of how a husband and wife bring differences to their marriage but create something new.

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God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Clouds

These photos of the New River were taken at Grandview Lookout a mere 2 hours apart. We got up in the morning expecting clouds and rain, so we were pleasantly surprised that the rain let up enough to go hiking in the late morning. We were also happy that the River was visible when we got to Grandview Lookout. That didn’t last long though and the gorge was completely obscured by low clouds before we finished the hike.

We all experience “clouds” in our lives that block us from seeing what is in front of us. Thankfully, God blesses us with times that we can see clearly, if only briefly. That is what discernment is about.

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God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Us and Them

This is a view of El Capitan and Half Dome in Yosemite. I took this photo 9 years ago when we visited California. About a year ago, we got a puzzle that had almost the same view. And yet, not exactly the same. I’m sure many hundreds if not thousands of their individuals have taken similar photos but I am confident none are exactly the same as this one.

That is us. No matter how similar, not exactly the same. It is tempting to divide the world into “us” and “them.” “Us” are people who are “just like us” and “Them” are people who are not at all like us. This is not just an oversimplification of the world, it is flat out wrong. We do well when we both recognize and appreciate the ways we are different.

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God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

El Camino

This photo was taken during our pilgrimage in northern Spain five years ago, El Camino de Santiago. That pilgrimage was the start in this blog; a way to share the times and places where I saw God “along the way.”

El Camino is a journey that begins before you arrive in Spain, maybe even before you even begin your planning. And it certainly does not end when you arrive in Santiago. For me, this photo journal is but one way that the journey continues.

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God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Up Close or Far Away

This photo was taken at Arches National Park of an area called the Fiery Furnace. It gets its name from the fiery red appearance at sunset. Not only is it dramatic from a distance, it is dramatic to hike through with numerous sandstone arches including the Walk Through Arch, Crawl Through Arch, Skull Arch, Kissing Turtles Arch, and Surprise Arch. To limit the impact on the environmental, a permit is required for access to the Fiery Furnace (or you can join a ranger-guided tour).

Creation, amazing up close or far away.

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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.

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God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

An Imperfect World

This is the Grand Prismatic Spring in Yellowstone. When we were there, we saw the spring from multiple different views on two different days. This was the first day we saw it; it was a very cloudy and drizzly day. As a result, it was hard to get a really good view of the spring. We went back 2 days later on a much clearer (and warmer) day. What a difference in the views! That said, the views were still amazing this first day.

So what would my impression of the Grand Prismatic Spring have been if I had only seen it the first day? Disappointment? How often are we disappointed because something is not “perfect”? How do we even know what is perfect?

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God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Standing Out

This is a photo of Mt Rainier from our trip 4 years ago. The mountain certainly makes for a striking image. One reason is that the peak is so much higher than the surrounding area. As I understand it, this is expressed as the topographic prominence which is over 13,000 ft for Mt Rainier (most in the contiguous US).

We are called to stand out. To be a city on a hill. How? Through our love. Love of God, love of neighbor.

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