Tag Archives: Seven_Devils

Some deep thoughts about forgiveness from Father Thomas Keating

“Vulnerability means to be hurt over and over again without seeking to love less, but more. Divine love is sheer vulnerability–sheer openness to giving.  Being vulnerable means loving one another as Christ loved us.  If we did not have to forgive people, we would have no way of manifesting God’s forgiveness toward us.  We pass on the mercy we ourselves have received. The best way to receive divine love is to give it away, and the more we pass it on, the more we increase our capacity to receive.”  Father Thomas Keating

Feather Woman Falls near Sperry Chalet

Hells Canyon and the Seven Devils Mts


Hells Canyon vistas

Needless to say, the views into the massive Snake River canyon, and the side canyons, lift one up beyond one’s tiny self.  If only we had wings to fly, to soar, to see deeply into the intricacies of these canyons, filled with flowers, grasses, trees, and wildlife.

looking over Freeze Saddle, the main trail into Hells Canyon

Scarlet gilia

lupine and the Seven Devils

There is no end to prayer

“There is no end to prayer. It echoes on forever in your soul. Long after the visible demonstration has been made and forgotten, the prayer that produced it continues to work for your spiritual advancement, for the creative power of a God thought is unlimited and eternal.”  Emmett Fox

“In prayer, we need to speak whatever truth is in us: pain and grief, fear and disappointment, yearning and desire, questions and doubts, hope and faith, failure and weakness, praise and thanks, despair and sorrow, anger, and yes, even hatred.”  Marjorie J. Thompson
I enjoy envisioning my prayers as spreading far, far beyond my mere ego mortality. They certainly are more “treasures in heaven” than anything else I try to do by myself here on earth.
Hells Canyon, Seven Devils Mts, OR

ells Canyon, Seven Devils Mts, OR

Hells Canyon hiking

Of all the hikes I have been privileged to do in Oregon, the Hat Point trail into Hells Canyon is one of my top three.  Marshal, our Chinese MBA student, Bob Carter, my PCT hiking companion, and I spent two nights and three days in the canyon this last week of June.  The trail drops a couple thousand feet in three miles down to spring time green benches and massive ponderosa pine trees. Filled with wildflowers and bird songs, this is one of the most peaceful and awe inspiring place one could spend time.  The geologic forces that formed this canyon include volcanoes, inland oceans, tectonic plate collisions, more lava flows and the slow cutting force of the Snake river, which now forms the boundary between Oregon and Idaho. Measured from the heights of Idaho’s Seven Devils mountains to the river, the canyon is 7, 993 deep, deeper than the Grande Canyon.  Its long sculpted, layered benches remind one of the Grand Canyon, although the colors are shades of green and brown, rather than reds and tans. One is humbled to think of the Creator who spoke all this into existence and whose Presence is still there. Indeed, I felt I was truly in His holy temple.


The reality of God’s Presence

When I was young, and even as an adult, I used to think that God was floating “up there” while I was doing the best I could walking on earth.  As my relationship with Him has developed into a walking conversation, I have realized that He is not even across town; He is right here, next to each one of us. I very much enjoyed what Oswald Chambers wrote in “My Utmost for His Highest” on July 20: “Having the reality of God’s presence is not dependent on our being in a particular circumstance or place, but is only dependent on our determination to keep the Lord before us continually.  Our problems arise when we refuse to place our trust in the reality of His presence….The experience the psalmist speaks of–‘we will not fear even though…” (Psalm 46:2) will be ours once we are grounded on the truth of the reality of God’s presence, not just a simple awareness of it, but an understanding of the reality of it.”


Wallowa Mountains and the Cat’s Back

The “Divide,” or the “Cat’s Back,” evocative names the designate a remote, little visited area of Wallowa County in NE Oregon, displays some of the most beautiful country you will find anywhere in this nation. In 1885, sisters Daisy and Caroline Wasson came to live there on a homestead established by their parents. High, on an open ridge with spectacular views of the Wallowa and Seven Devils mountains, they spent ten years. Snowed in for six months of the years, they learned to sew from their mother, and do the multi varied tasks that made life bearable in the winter. In the summer, the place was magical. Daisy wrote about those who wondered how/why they could live in such “god forsaken” place: “I have a picture in my mind of Caroline, standing, listening. She has on a little white linen hat and she is holding her walking sticks, and leaning a little forward. I watch her, and then after a little bit ask what she is doing. ‘I hear music,’ she answers, ‘when I am real still and look at the mountains. I hear it.’

“I hear music when I am real still and look at the mountains.”  Meg and I have enjoyed this music, the silence, as we have enjoyed the blessing and privilege to visit the Cat’s Back several times in this early summer.  I hope you enjoy this pictures as well.