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

Seasons

This photo was taken in December on my third visit to these falls in 6 months. There was a striking difference in the water between the visits. In the summer, there was lots of water which was very clear. In the fall, there was almost no water flowing over the falls. The third visit found plenty of water, but it was very muddy.

I find these changes to be a metaphor for the ups and downs we experience in life. Water can represent so many different things: joy, peace, love, hope to name a few. It is important to recognize that in the “seasons” of life, each of these will be available in different ways and varied amounts.

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God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Time & Distance

This is a photo of the Santa Elena Canyon in Big Bend. The Rio Grande River run through and created the canyon. It looks very much like a “V” in this view. But from inside the canyon, the walls look almost straight up. Mostly, this is because you can’t see the tops of the walls from the bottom. Also, I think this view makes it look a little more V-shaped than it really is in the inner part of the canyon.

A reminder that distance (and time) gives a different perspective. It may be more accurate, but may be less so.

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God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Before we were formed

I’ve seen many examples of the power of water, but this was one of the more dramatic examples. This is the Rio Grande River passing through the Boquillas Canyon. It doesn’t seem possible, but the river is passing right through a mountain ridge. What explains this phenomenon is that the river was here before the mountains and it cut the canyon as the mountains were forming.

God existed before we were born and has been shaping us since we were in the womb.

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God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Awe & Wonder

This is another photo of the Virgin River in Zion NP. The river bottom is covered with large rocks. And then there are many boulders in and along the river. It seems amazing that all of these rocks and boulders have been carried through the canyon by the river. It is a striking display of the power of rushing water.

Awe & Wonder

Who can fathom all that You’ve done?

Earth, stars, and sun, in one breath

Who can fathom the depth of Your love?

The reach of Your mercy knows no end

I want to see Your glory, feel Your thunder

Always filled with awe and wonder

Behold Your beauty, all Your splendor

Always filled with awe and wonder

(Song by Andrew Holt, Austin Davis, Daniella Mason)

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God in all things, Photography, Scenery, Travel

Upstream/Downstream

This photo is from point where the Orderville Canyon joins the Narrows in Zion NP. Just up the Virgin River (to the left) leads to Wall Street, the narrowest section of the canyon.

We went only a hundred yards or so to the left and then turned around. I did a similar distance through the Orderville Canyon before turning around.

This hike was an amazing experience. Over half of it is spent actually walking in the water of the Virgin River. At the deepest points, it was just above mid-thigh. I thought walking upstream would be harder, working against the current. But it turns out walking downstream was a similar challenge. A lesson for life also?

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God in all things, Photography, Scenery

Searching

This is another photo of the Horseshoe Falls at Caesar Creek. I had never heard of this spot until recently and now I’m seeing and hearing of lots of people visiting there. It is less than a mile hike to get there from the parking area, so I wouldn’t consider it remote. On the other hand, it is fairly removed from the more popular spots at Caesar Creek, so you are not likely to find it unless you set out looking for it.

I’ve learned that one of the biggest factors in a hiking trail being popular is word of mouth. Of course, these days the Internet magnifies word of mouth. All Trails is an app we like to use when searching for a new trail.

There are numerous web sites, blogs and newsletters that can serve a similar purpose for our spiritual lives. May this blog be serving that purpose for you!

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