I am hiking across acres of Southwest Colorado with my fabulous best friend, a Black Mouth Cur that I named, appropriately, “Blessing” on our morning “walk” through the fields and woods of the farm where we now live. It is out … Continue reading
TRAVELING ALONG THIS IMPRESSIVE RIVER, WHICH IS FLOWING NORTHWEST, paralleling the coast, I scramble up a hill for a photo op. Standing as close to the edge of my perch as safely possible, I hesitate to begin shooting. The awe and power of the river is complimented by the fantastic diversity of the rock walls and it is commanding my full attention. Clearly, iron dominates the rock canyon, leaving a fantastic rusty patina which is frequently interrupted with dark green trees and shrub. Gray to black mudstones, siltstones and sandstones further the pleasant variations. Even a swipe of golden brown color to complete the picture.
The river’s edge cuts a raw, white, jagged saw tooth line, the salt-crusted shoreline and boulders that rise above the water, where the natural water’s pulse and current spray have frequently misted the protruding boulders, scatter these highlights throughout the landscape. The current is intense, furious whenever the canyon walls insinuate upon the channel.
There is an odd, captivating rock formation close to the more turbulent section of the channel. It appears as though molten gray rock has spilled from the canyon wall with a round, spoon-shaped end closest to the water’s edge with its wide handle, ladle-like, balancing on the upper riverbank. This salmon-frequented river flows primarily northeast before changing course to southern pastures and wetlands.
Only a few hours into the trek and I’m met with dry-grass contrasting a man-made path with lush forests of oak and pines and other trees that I can’t distinguish, looming into its distant future. This revs my energy level, the promise of cooler, green pastures is inviting.
It doesn’t take long to leave signs of civilization behind and soon the hushed, fog-covered forest embraces my curious nature. Every step is soft, debris-mulched and fragrant under my boot.
This is true paradise.
On up the trail I continue, not knowing just why I feel I should get really deep into the forest today but I am very happy to be here, doing what I’m doing. The scenery never gets old, thank You God. The wildflowers are in full bloom and some are exceedingly fragrant. Their youth is renewed every spring, man, what a thrill that must be! I continue to scan the ubiquitous plant life and deeply inhale the surrounding scents. The perfume of the forest, nothing can beat it. The fragrances change as I proceed, pine mingling with wild licorice, licorice mingling with bay, bay mingling with mustard … I’m not sure if the oak trees have a scent but their dropped acorns are like marbles under my boots.
There is a spot reserved for me under a very large sequoia, its branches outstretched in a welcoming, “Come hither, under my canopy and rest.” I oblige. I remove my pack, habitually snapping the belt closed and settle down for a snack. The sound of rusting paper from my energy bar has apparently alerted many creatures, the most forward and aggressive of which is the scrub jay in front of me. Not far behind are a few squirrels & chipmunks in various stages of anticipation and wariness, and I’m beginning to wonder where Thumper and Bambi are.
I ignore the advancing blue jay and tip my head back to see if I can see any sky. What I do see sends my heart racing and my hands shaking.
My head now on a swivel, I check my surroundings more thoroughly, then up again into the trees. I begin to rise, keeping my eyes on the trees above me, moving ever so carefully, forcing slow and deliberate movement.
Where is mama bear?
Two curious black bear cubs are peeking down and over the foliage of the pine that is right next to the big sequoia that I am against. Still looking up, I reach for my pack, once again thankful for my habit of cinching the belt, and toss my power bar over past the oak that holds the cubs. Backing away, thankful for the soft, cushy debris and needle-carpeted ground I am looking everywhere. Seriously everywhere. Behind me, above me, beside me. No longer does my immediate forest hold a critter audience, the animals have left town.
I just can not even believe this is happening.
My heart ratchets yet another level as I swing my eyes towards the scraping, then soft thump sound. NO WAY! Those cubs are heading towards me, SNAP! I speak firmly to them, “No bear!” but apparently they don’t understand English. The larger of the two is still, although a bit hesitant, coming forward. I am nearly paralyzed with fear. WHERE IS MAMA BEAR?
I bump into a bush, maybe a tree I don’t really care and could not afford to be distracted with finding out. My entire body is shaking, my muscles feel weak, defenseless and inadequate. I sneak a look and find the path I came in on still backing away. Both cubs seem to be very perplexed, the smaller a bit distracted with a flying insect of sorts, the other looking from its sibling then to me, sizing up the situation. Thankfully they are remaining grounded where they are. But for how long, and the million dollar question: Where’s mama bear?!
I need not wonder any longer.
Emerging from the underbrush, sending a fleeting glance toward my power bar, is protective mama bear! She brawls at her cubs like a mother admonishing her children for straying beyond the yard, then gives her full, very direct attention to me. Somehow I continue to back away, averting eye contact, wild and insane thoughts swirling through my mind. Out of the corner of my eye I see the cubs scrambling up a tree to safety. Obedient children now that mom’s back.
Realizing that I have been shaking my head in a “no, no, no!” while retreating further, I force every cell, every adrenalin dump into sniper-concentrated focus. I know the choices on what to do, now how on earth do I choose which avenue to take? “Read the body language” comes back to memory and I continue backing away, not saying a word, my hands needlessly out in a “stay away” gesture.
Mama grunts threats, her sounds deep and quite menacing, then makes a swipe at the ground in front of her, sending dust and sticks flying into the air, shaking her lowered head. I’m reminded of a bull about to charge and I’m certain I’m going to lose it completely, right here. Right now. She has not charged me, I take this as a very good sign. I am still backing away when suddenly I’m falling, and I still haven’t landed yet!
Tangled in brush and briars, I look up the hill to see if she has decided to follow, then end me. Piece by piece, Marybeth-mulch nourishing the forest. At this point I have lost all reason, tearing my clothes and skin as I thrash through the sticky under brush in full panic mode. I don’t see her, I have lost my pack somewhere along the fall and I no longer care. I am completely overcome with irrational fear as I begin to run down the trail. DO NOT RUN FROM A PREDATOR but I figure after the fall that I’m far enough away and I’m around the bend so that she can’t see me? Panic trumps reason, it really does.
I am back to the manmade pathway, out of the dense forest and I have not heard any movement or growl behind me since the fall but every fiber of my being is still at high alert. I collapse in a sobbing heap, then I begin to laugh. I think perhaps I’m hysterical, just a thought.
Once I recovered and was shakily on my way home I was first, exceedingly grateful that I was reasonably unharmed. Physically. Emotionally I’ll probably never be the same. I thought about the good habit of keeping my keys and phone separate from my pack and for the habit of always fastening my pack belt. Even though I lost my pack, had I not fallen, I would have had it for minute protection or for the first aid kit inside it.
Establishing good hiking habits and knowing how to interpret and react to animal behavior goes a very long way. Even when you mess up the best laid plans.
For information on safety, signs of presence, and first aid please click:
Fire officials said the blaze burning in remote, steep terrain in Northern California had grown to more than 84 square miles and was only 2 percent contained on Thursday, down from 5 percent a day earlier.
Members of the Tuolumne County Board of Supervisors gathered Wednesday night to write a resolution asking Gov. Jerry Brown for help, according to NBCBayArea.com.
Despite the progress crews made Wednesday, the fire has gone from burning 16,000 acres on Wednesday to 54,000 acres Thursday morning — making it almost twice the size of the city of San Francisco.
The fire fight is in its sixth day against the aggressive flames that have burned through trees, brush and nine structures.
Crews were forced to close parts of Highway 120, a main east-west route that leads into the national park, and other roads because of the active fire. About 1,300 fire crews are battling the blaze.
The U.S. Forest Service announced Wednesday that it is running out of funds to fight wildfires and is diverting $600 million from timber and recreation. It has already spent $967 million on the more than 32,000 wildfires this year.
Officials with the county and the U.S. Forestry Service closed the Broken Blade, Twisted Arrow and Pima Loops areas of the Table Mountain Campgrounds near Wrightwood, a small mountain town northeast of Los Angeles. The squirrel tested positive Tuesday.
The plague disease spreads to humans through bites from infected fleas. And though the infection had once been called the “Black Death” because it killed millions before the advent of antibiotics, infections today in the U.S. are rare and usually not fatal.
“It is important for the public to know that there have only been four cases of human plague in Los Angeles County residents since 1984, none of which were fatal,” said Dr. Jonathan E. Fielding, the county’s Director of Public Health.
It is not rare, however, to find plague in the ground squirrels of the San Gabriel Mountains, according to health officials.
A squirrel trapped in 2010 near the Los Alamos campgrounds in Gorman carried the disease, as did one in 2007 and two in 1996 from the Stoneyvale Picnic Area near La Canada/Flintridge. Another plague-carrying squirrel was found in 1995 near a campground in Vogel Flats.
Officials urged campers, hikers and picnickers in the area to avoid wild animals and particularly ground squirrels, and to make sure all people and pets are protected from fleas.
Those heading on a camping trip this summer might want to be just as wary of crossing paths with the wrong bacteria as they would a hungry bear.
After 200 park employees and visitors reported bouts of gastrointestinal illness at Yellowstone National Park and nearby Grand Teton National Park this month, national park officials have warned visitors to be vigilant about hygiene.
The outbreak started on June 7, when a group touring the Mammoth Hot Springs complained of stomach flu and other gastrointestinal problems. After the tour group members reported their illnesses, about other 50 visitors and 150 park employees reported similar symptoms.
Preliminary reports found that they had norovirus, or “stomach flu,” which affects up to 21 million people, every year according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Al Mash, spokesman for Yellowstone National Park, said campers who were worried about the outbreak should take care to properly store their food and wash their hands with soap and water before eating. “Don’t rely on hand sanitizer. It’s good for a while if you don’t have access to water,” said Mash. “But sanitizer is a poor second to washing your hands.”
According to the CDC, the norovirus can be very contagious and is usually passed from contaminated surfaces or food.
Mash said that while it might be more difficult to wash hands before and after meals on camping trips, sporting goods stores sell soap slivers or biodegradable soap that can be used on camping trips. “My manta is be aware but not afraid,” said Mash.
Employees at Yellowstone and nearby Grand Teton park have been cleaning and disinfecting the areas where the illnesses were first reported. Yellowstone National Park regularly has 20,000 visitors a day.
The norovirus outbreak is just the latest one to hit the national parks. Last year, Yosemite National Park experienced an outbreak of the deadly hantavirus. Infection with hantavirus, often contracted through contact with contaminated mouse feces or urine, can lead to hantavirus pulmonary syndrome, which can be fatal, according to the CDC.
During last summer’s outbreak, eight people were sickened and three died. To stop the spread of disease the National Park Service tore down the buildings where the outbreak was centered and are currently trapping and testing mice for the hantavirus.
Kathy Kupper, a spokeswoman for the National Park Service, said if campers were worried about becoming sick they should be sure to check in with the park’s website or information line before they arrive. Any potential hazards from disease outbreaks from high concentrations of ticks, for example, will be listed in each national park’s newsletter or on its website.
“Always pay attention to the information. Don’t just take the [informational pamphlet] and throw it in the glove box,” said Kupper.
Kupper said the one piece of camping safety advice, which is most often forgotten, is to stay put if lost.
“Otherwise it’s like a wild goose chase,” said Kupper. “Stop moving. That way you’re conserving energy, and rescuers have a better chance to find you.“
During my various adventuring, I have discovered that one never knows what they will discover. The expansive dry river bed stretched an easy 50 yards wide. The trek was arduous and demanding with the rough and uneven rock-covered ground. The sun is high and blistering. Gnats (my friend calls them Teensy Flies) swirl about my face, seeking moisture to rob from me. I sweat furiously and grimace as I roll my ankle yet again; man, I really don’t care for hiking over dry river rock. I look ahead, seeking my sons’ outline, his figure a black cutout, wreathed in the glaring sun, but he’s an acceptable distance ahead. He turns to check on my status and slightly waves, interesting how we think alike. He pauses at a junction.
We discuss whether to continue north or head east at the junction. Looking high and ahead we spot a copse of trees. It’s a no-brainier, let’s get into some shade, we forge onward, detouring to the easterly route. As we round the bend there are obvious signs of a recent flash-flood, carving huge sections from the forest floor. It is at least a six-foot deep divot by miles in length that has removed acres of shrubs, sycamore, pine and chaparral. After the devastating fire a few seasons ago, coupled with torrential rains shortly after, the forest is now transformed into a contrasting combination of desolation and of an environment in the throes of renewal. Fire is an important cycle of the forest and sections are healing and looking healthy with minimal debris carpeting the higher ground. Although, for this national forest to fully regenerate, it’ll be beyond my life span. Another 30 years for softwood conifers, to 200 years for the redwoods and certain pines. My son scrambles to the higher ground, among a mix of mature growth with second-growth trees and shrubs, he turns and extends his hand to assist me. We continue our exploration, remarking how drastically the area has changed.
As we pause to hydrate, a shaft of sunlight breaks through the canopy of trees. Something sparkles near the ground in front of me, it draws my eye. I stoop down to inspect the oddity and gasp when I identify the threat. I gravely warn my son, “Don’t move.” He looks at me, with concerned-wrinkled eyebrows, his water bottle paused midway. I point.
We have stumbled upon a trap. Another step and we would have been in very deep “Bandini”. Without moving our feet we scope our surroundings. My son spots then points to the joining trap wires, then to what the traps are protecting. Inadvertently, we have come upon an illegal marijuana farm, fully armed and exceedingly intent upon “no trespassing”. Oh, snap… My hands are suddenly very sweaty.
Lord, Your protection please! If there are guards present, please blind their eyes and ears to our unintended intrusion!
My son slowly steps back, soft, careful steps, his head swiveling in hyper vigilance. He extends his hand, indicating for me to follow. I hold his hand, fearful, barely breathing. Every muscle is tense. We scan for our incoming footprints to follow out and away but they are impossible to detect even with minimal forest debris.
Lord God, direct out steps.
I feel like I’m in a military movie, this is so surreal. My senses are heightened, we retreat very carefully, staying low, hunched, military style. My ears strain for the slightest sound. Were we detected? My son signals for me to stop, I pull-up silently and squat lower still, he senses something.
A sudden, alarming and tremendous CRACK! …
Was that a high-caliber rifle shot?!
… echoes through the canyon, then a sonic boom of falling rock from the canyons upper edge and massive boulders begin tumbling warp-speed towards the dry riverbed, along the bend that we took to enter this portion of the forest. The thundering roar of the rock-slide was a safe distance from us, yet with the present uncertainty, it quickly added to the confusion and sense of alarm. The ground shakes as during an earthquake. The rumbling is near deafening as the amount of falling rock increases in quantity and pace. Finally it settles with a choking dirt cloud, a bursting mushroom, it then blossoms indolently. I feel faint from anticipation and realize I had stopped breathing. I cover my mouth and nose with the crook of my arm, squeezing my eyes shut against the dust and old forest fire ash fragments.
I put my faith and trust… our lives… into Your Hands, Lord. Thank You, if we had stayed hiking among the dry riverbed, we would have been seriously injured. There would not have been ample time to scramble out of the path of the rock and landslide. Praise You, Lord!
We thoroughly scrutinize the area we have left behind us, low in the brush, high in the trees, and determine that we are alone and high-tail it back towards the dry riverbed. We are in the wide-open space, very public, as we check out the rock-slide. My son asks me if I’m alright, I respond wordlessly with a waffling gesture with my hand. It required very little discussion to conclude our “adventure” for the day, as we stumble-hiked over the miserable terrain, heading back to our vehicle. My son’s war whoop echoes across the massive canyon as we clear the “trouble” arena. If I had the ability, I would have joined his enthusiastic vocal relief, a woman’s voice just doesn’t do it justice though.
Thank You, Lord God. Thank You, thank You!
“… You are my Rock and my fortress and my deliverer; the God of my strength, in Whom I will trust.” 2 Samuel 22:2-3
In stark contrast to last night’s star gazing, a beautiful stand of quaking aspen stretches far to the east, the sunrise painting the jagged pinnacle with a fascinating spectrum of color, highlighted by the multicolored sunrise, then modified by the occasional, wispy cloud. Shimmers of golden foliage radiate life, fresh and new this very morning. I’m certain I’ve never smelled air this fresh, clean or inviting. It carries the taste of promise on it. I watch as the sun continues its slow climb to a higher station in the lightly mottled sky. My eye is drawn to the fascinating lake that reflects the entire scene on its still, mirrored surface. Serrated vivid hues of yellow, gold, and orange with a thread of charcoal, bridge the spectacular cobalt water to its shoreline. The bank is punctuated with a ribbon of darkly shadowed brush, fanning its smudged boundary along the irregular water’s edge, dividing the scene dramatically, strikingly. It moves the heart, an intoxicating vista. A dark pool brackets the outer westerly edge, hinting at deeper waters, a potentially profitable bass fishing hole, mingled with underwater plants and leafless, drowned trees. Truly the pearl of the region rests and boasts of its beauty before me. I realize I’m hungry. I tear myself from the blessed demonstration of a promising new day to reignite last night’s campfire. My dwindling pile of dead and down looks too meager for a hot breakfast, but I want a hot drink and I have enough wood to heat a few cups of water. I spread out my petroleum-laced cotton balls under several twigs and strike the match; instant results. I gather fresh pine needles and break them up and then add them to my tin of water, setting my pine tea to boil onto a flat rock that I had placed in the fire circle last night.
The early morning air is brisk; I warm my hands over the paltry fire, then cup my hands over my nose to warm my face. The steam from my pine tea as I sip it supplements the warming process easily. I scarf a breakfast bar during my morning devotions, and stand midway; need to stretch and wake up the muscles. I decide I will continue climbing; I want to reach the overlook at its highest rim. I pack my gear after scattering the remaining ashes, now doused in leftover clean-up water. Casting a longing look at the array of aspen and the surrounding, profoundly exquisite lake I leave my camp site with as little trace of my temporary residence as possible, ending my cleanup with a downed, short pine branch sweep.
I realize I hadn’t studied my map and compass again, just to be sure my bearings are correct. I justify the compass edge against the maps left westerly edge; adjust the bezel, point the compass towards my target goal, note the boxed needle and then top-pocket the compass. I fold the map into my pack, confident I’m on-course. It appears I’m on a game trail, it sure beats fighting underbrush and Mountain White Thorn patches. I study my target goal far ahead and am glad I began during the crisp early morning conditions. Now this is backpacking!
It’s a few hours later and the day is heating up quickly. I scan the terrain after a swift motion catches my peripheral vision. I couldn’t see what sort of animal it was, but it’s at least the size of a coyote. A strong, offensive, unbelievably vile smell permeates the air, and then I hear the ominous sounds of a swarm of what I think must be bees. As I round the corner, it’s apparent that it isn’t bees, but an enormous amount of flies. A huge, black cloud of very noisy flies in fact, drawn to the scent of a fresh kill. The kill’s death-scent; a chemical dinner bell for creatures big and small. Perhaps I scared off one of the scavengers just previously. The kill is partially buried with forest debris, known as a food cache, and I mentally run-through which animals try to hide their kill only to return to feast on it later. Large or small … returns later to feast …
My eyes wide, I examine my surroundings more methodically, thoroughly. I really, really don’t want to interrupt an animal’s lunch, especially a carnivore’s meal. I can’t shake the mental picture of a boiler-rooms’ large pressure gauge, needle pegged at its maximum red-line danger zone. I sense red flags waving frantically all around me. Cougars are crepuscular hunters and it’d be dusk by the time I crossed this path on my return. Yet, insanely I muse: Turn around or continue? If I continue, it means crossing paths with this kill yet another time.
I decide I can return to this trail another time, possibly with a hiking partner; but now is time to turn-tail and head home. I hadn’t thought-out just how remote this hike is, nor had I thought about the larger wildlife in this region. I waste not another moment in this particular area. My steps are swift, and not as careful. My focus is straight-ahead, I am not checking my surroundings. I remember that I need to watch for predators. Again my focus is tunnel-vision, I’m not trail tracking.
While keeping an eye on the surrounding wilderness for any predators, (that vile odor is still prevalent, I’m now down-wind of the kill) out-of-the-blue I hear a much-too-familiar-to-me rattling sound. I gasp and see the rattler under a small shrub just a single pace ahead of me. In lieu of the last rattler encounter, the infamous “Incident”, I completely overreact. I scream (as if that helps), jump up (I seem to manage this acrobatic move rather easily these days) and turn to run. I did everything one does not need to nor should do. Somehow, as I turn to flee, I trip over my trekking pole and find myself scrambling for purchase as I’m now over the side of the mountain. Again!
I am in an even worse place as far as other vipers are concerned, this area has all the hallmark’s of DEFINITE snake infestation, plus falling further down the side of the mountain is a viable threat. I’m sliding down the loose-rock. Terrifying images of a den of vipers sear my intellect; I am screaming for God to, “Get me out of here! Oh, Lord help me! GET ME OUT OF HERE!” as frightening déjà vu sears my mind, scrambling massive panic cells throughout the bloodstream. I frantically scuttle uphill with every ounce of effort and beyond. I am more terrified of startling another snake than falling down the mountainside. This hike is circling the drain but fast.
Somehow, it had to have been His Hand helping me, I get back onto the trail and I see the snake moving across the game trail, heading right into the potentially snake infested area I just scrambled out from.
I yell aloud to myself, “Get the camera, get the camera!” as I fumble with the camera case zipper. I’m able to get two pictures off, one of the tail end as it leaves the trail, another with its rattle standing up when it is under some brush. I always strive to have the ‘evidence’, I’m not completely sure why. I sometimes think since I experience way too many freaky things in the wilderness and I need the photographic evidence.
Inventory reveals that I have bent one of my trekking poles, my arms are cut up, I completely messed up my knees, “that” knee especially, and my most favorite hiking pants are torn. BLAST! Insult upon injury! I bend forward from the waist trying to get my wits about me and blood to my head, once again I feel like I may faint. Oh, snap … I really messed myself up … again. I am way, way far from civilization.
Seriously, am I learning anything?
Not wanting to see how badly the knee is injured, I skip looking through the gaping tear in my trousers. If I know how bad it is, I probably won’t make it all the way down, and it’s a at least full days hike back down. Sometimes ignorance is bliss or something to that effect. I can’t have The Incident affect me like this! I just cannot overreact when being simply warned by the viper that I’m too close. It’s not like I was standing on it, it simply wanted its “space” so that the shy critter could move away from me. This is, in fact, exactly what the snake did. Textbook, easily anticipated, extremely easy to avoid confrontation much less flat-out panic. Logically I know this to be true, but I struggle with residual fear from standing on a rattler just a month previous.
I ever-so carefully continue my descent, now completely rattler-paranoid, foolishly jumping even at the sight of a lizard.
Why do I hike the wilderness? Am I energized by the drama of risk, of real danger? Is this what lights me up? What is wrong with me? I’ve encountered many rattlers before The Incident; I simply waited for them to move on. No harm, no foul.
Lord God, please help me get over this new fear. Help me overcome this new fear of rattlers, I must not overreact! Draw me close to You once again! Show me how to apply Your word to this situation!
And amazingly, the adventures continue….
Todays Lesson Learned: By overreacting, I literally threw myself into a potentially more dangerous situation. For more on snake and other animal behavior (so that you know what to expect, and can react with calm) click here http://ow.ly/gY1Yn
Are you enjoying my Lessons-Learned (How Not To Hike Stupid) series? Share your comments, questions, or concerns. Go to the “About the Author” tab on this site, scroll down to the “Comments” section bottom left. Your input is appreciated!
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AMAZING WHAT A LIGHTWEIGHT PIECE OF ALUMINUM FOIL CAN DO FOR THE TREKKER.
- Signaling device.
- Keep lunch warm.
- Pile in and take-away ashes from your campfire.
- Can become a cooking “plate” over hot coals.
- Fashion a food platter, fork, spoon, bowl, whatever you need rather lugging the real deal.
- Under your sleeping bag to keep it dry, you warmer and insulated.
- Keeps matches dry.
- Fishing lure.
- Funnel for drip coffee.
- Reflect light for a great photo op.
- Fix loose battery connection in your flashlight.
- Radiate solar heat.Wind shelter to start your fire.
- Stop a leaky tent roof. NOT if there’s lightening!
LORD, I NEED TO FALL IN LOVE WITH YOU!
You know when you’re totally in love with someone and you are willing to do ANYTHING for that person? That new and fresh, exciting love that reaches above the tallest of mountains, across the deepest of oceans. When you’re dating (or engaged), how you are so happy to fulfill the slightest of needs … you need another soda? Let me get it for you! Allow me to open the door for you, it’s my pleasure. You need, you want …. let me be the answer to those for you. So eager to please, to serve, existing simply to make that person happy! You expect to spend the rest of your days making that person happy and comfortable. And happily so! In your heart of hearts you KNOW that you would lay down your very life for that person!
THAT is what I desire for my relationship with my Lord to be like. I want to make Him happy. Proud of me in all the things I do, say and think. Why is it that I fail in this area of my relationship with God? So often I wonder what is wrong with me … have I really gotten that self-centered and jaded throughout the years?
Renew in me a right spirit O Lord. Help me to listen, to grow in You. That my actions and words will reflect You and Your intimate, faithful, never-ending love. I want to fall deeply in love with You.
Standing at the incredible vista, overlooking the valley, grasslands that stretch the horizons, I’m reminded of His power and love. He has been so merciful to me. In my books I describe the sacred moments as well as the exciting hiking moments and accomplishments. But the sacred moments I truly cherish and they stay fresh in my memory. Plus His interventions, sparing me from the bite from the rattler that I accidentally stood on. Sparing me from death as I fell off the mountain. Saving me from an unknown threat that was imminent and vicious, I’m thankful that He blinded my eyes to it. I’m SO thankful that the absolute power in the Name of Jesus that I was able to quickly utter that ceased the assault, without hesitation. I was unscathed and loved Him all the more for it.
I need to fall in love with the Lord. Deeply, completely, and immediately. I need to know You more, to learn of You in Your word, the bible. You reveal Yourself so completely, help my eyes to see, my mind to understand, my heart to beat for You.
I suspect that I’m holding onto something that is not allowing this to happen to the fullest degree. I pray that You will show me what I need to release, Lord.
Have you, the reader, discovered your “falling in love” with God? The God Who created the heavens and earth and all that is within them? The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob? Have you discovered what needed to be relinquished? Will you share what it is? I look forward to and welcome your comments, your experiences. TTYL and with love.