Tag Archives: Wallowa_County

He will wipe away all tears

He will swallow up death forever!
  The Sovereign Lord will wipe away all tears. 
                                                Isaiah 25:8
 
As I read this passage a couple days ago, once again I was awed by the knowledge of God’s love.  Despite the unhappy struggles we all go through during our lifetime, God prevails.  He does give us life after death; He does know  our sufferings, and WILL wipe away our tears.
 
A couple of weeks ago, as Meg and I were camped above the Snake River in Hells Canyon, a hummingbird whizzed back and forth in the early evening light. I clicked quickly, hoping I might come close to capturing the moment on camera.  This hummer is obviously not in focus, but its glow is mystical.  God’s presence is mystical; it is quiet; it is “be still land know I am God.”  And, it is His gift to us that He will “wipe every tear from our eyes!”
Saddle Creek Campground Wallowa County
Saddle Creek Campground Wallowa County

The views from the top

Besides the “birds and the beasts,” Meg and I enjoyed the never ending vistas above Hells Canyon at the Saddle Creek Campground near Hat Point in Wallowa county.  You could not find a five star hotel with any better views than we enjoyed from our campsite. We read and relaxed and enjoyed the changing shadows and highlights as the sun moved across the sky.

Attitude adjustment

Fr. Keating offers some challenging thoughts about God’s goodness. However, the starting point, is the first chapter of Genesis, when God saw that it was “all good.”  I have added the italics below.

“The seventh Fruit of the Spirit is Goodness. Goodness is the affirmation of the creation as good, together with a sense of oneness with the universe and everything God created. It recognizes the beauty of all creation in spite of the damage that human selfishness has imposed upon it. As a result gratitude toward God abounds in our hearts and a positive attitude characterizes our relationship with others and with the wear and tear of daily life.” Fr. Thomas Keating

Psalm24_13
Hells Canyon, near the Saddle Creek campground, Oregon

Birds and Beasts above Saddle Creek

Saddle Creek is one of many drainages that flow down steep basalt canyons into the Snake River. Often times, Meg and I stay at a Forest Service campground above Saddle Creek that looks into the majesty  side cliffs and benches that form Hells Canyon.  Bird and mammal life is busy, as these pictures show.  A pair of blue birds were nesting in a dead tree close to our campsite, providing us with fun sightings of their constant search for insects.

An ancient message that still speaks today

I will lead blind Israel down a new path,
    guiding them along an unfamiliar way.
I will brighten the darkness before them
    and smooth out the road ahead of them.
Yes, I will indeed do these things;
    I will not forsake them.  Isaiah 42: 16

None of us really “see” well.  It is good to know that Lord is always there to brighten whatever darkness surrounds us, and to make our way smooth. Indeed, He will never forsake us!

Grande_Ronce_river_sunset, Wallowa_County, Grande_Ronde_river

Troop 514 rafting the Grande Ronde Rive

Seventeen Scouts, ages ten and half to eighteen, along with seven adults, spent three days rafting the Grande Ronde river this past Friday through Sunday. We rented five boats. The river was low, slow, and challenging.– lots of obscured rocks that needed to be maneuvered around and between. However, all went well and the boys learned about “reading” the river, and rowing.

They cooked dutch oven meals for both dinner and breakfast.  We had four cooking groups and the boys did a wonderful job working together.  Their cooperation and collegiality was a joy to behold.  They were supportive of each other, and the few conflicts were minor. This is the third river trip we have done in the past four years.  I have enjoyed watching boys grow into young men.

Small steps of love

Isaiah_35_1_image_picture, saiah_35_2_image_picture, Hells_Canyon, Wallowa_County Once again, Henri Nouwen provides his challenging insights into how even small steps of loving moves us into God’s light.

“How can we choose love when we have experienced so little of it?  We choose love by taking small steps of love every time there is an opportunity.  A smile, a handshake, a word of encouragement, a phone call, a card, an embrace, a kind greeting, a gesture of support, a moment of attention, a helping hand, a present, a financial contribution, a visit …  all these are little steps toward love.

Each step is like a candle burning in the night.  It does not take the darkness away, but it guides us through the darkness.  When we look back after many small steps of love, we will discover that we have made a long and beautiful journey.”  Henri Nouwen

Isaiah_35_3_picture_image, Isaiah_35_3_picture_image, Milford_Track, McKinnon_Pass

Always keep your camera handy

As Meg and I were driving out to Wallowa County, we saw this great animal encounter. We had never witnessed anything like this.  Fortunately my camera was right with me, close at hand.

Thoughts this Memorial Day weekend

“The desire for certitude is an obstacle to launching full sail upon an ocean of trust.” Fr Richard Keating

This Memorial Day weekend I am reminded of what God spoke to Abraham so long, long ago: “Leave your father’s house, your friends, relatives and property, and come into the land I will show you.” Genesis 12:1 I am  blessed to have such deep, loving memories of my parents and grandparents.  Their blessings upon me have continued to this day and hopefully have been shared and passed on to my own children and grandchildren. I have left so much “behind” as my life has moved into paths, prepared by the Lord, that I had no idea ever existed.

His love is the constant. I cannot imagine what else He has in store for me.  I only know that His only Will for me is to live and share His Love.
Wallowa Mts, Iweytemlaykin State Historic Park

Hat Point, another Spring trip into Hells Canyon

A “must see” place in the Northwest, Hat Point lies opposite the Seven Devils mountains of Idaho, high above the Snake River.  The mountains and the river form the deepest canyon in the United States.  The road to the top is a sinuous gravel road, with the stretch of acrophobic drop offs. But the views are spectacular, and make the driving challenge more than worthwhile.

The road crosses the Imnaha river and climbs quickly to a canyon overlook filled with wildflowers and basalt layered cliffs. Then, as one climbs and curves higher, the view moves from the south to the east, and the deeper Hells Canyon and the Seven Devils come into view.
Usually snow blocks the road until late June.  With this year’s drought, however, Bob Coulter and I were able to make the trip in mid May. The wildflower progression was just starting, and we enjoyed the yellow glacier lilies, as well as the mountain goats that had not yet dispersed to parts unknown.

Imnaha river overlook on road to Hat Point
Imnaha river overlook on road to Hat Point
Balsam root and Imnaha canyon
Glacier lilies, Seven Devils Mts near Hat Point, Hells Canyon
Mountain blue bird
Mountain goats close to the Hat Point fire lookout
Enjoying the view
Inmate river canyon, Hells_Canyon_NRA