Certainly the world is not the world of a decade ago, nor even further back to the early days when Meg and I began to learn about ourselves, our similarities, strengths, weaknesses after our marriage on September 2, 1967. We really did not know God then; we believed he was “up there,” someplace, but we were strong on our own, not needing a relationship beyond what we were learning to share between us.
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.”
Meg and I traveled up the Lostine River road this Friday and set up camp at the trailhead to Maxwell Lake in the Eagle Cap Wilderness of NE Oregon. We took a five mile roundtrip training hike up the trail to test our gear and bodies for a major multi-day backpack in the Glacier Peak Wilderness of northern Washington with younger son Michael and his wife, Sara at the end of the month. The hike was challenging as we faced a major raging creek crossing as well as downed logs on the trail. We also crossed many calmer, more gentle streams. The water stimulated my thinking about both the protection the Lord gives as well as the sustenance, physically and spiritually, we receive from water. Here are some pictures reflecting that theme.
“Anyone who drinks this water will soon become thirsty again. But those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbly spring within them, giving them eternal life.”