Monday, July 09, 2007

Rise Above

Rise Above, originally uploaded by chanchanchepon.
This past Thursday evening, my dad and I drove up to our fish camp together to camp out and cut our grass. But that’s not all.

Early Friday morning, we woke up and got on the road, and my hybrid was challenged on some 9-10% grades as we traveled from our camp to Seneca Rocks. It was my second time visiting the state park this week. I think this is one of my dad’s favorite places to visit. There’s something refreshing that happens when you climb to the summit of Seneca Rocks.

Aside from the beautiful view of the valley below, Spruce Knob, and North Fork Mountain, something happens inside. You start to get a little different perspective. Maybe that’s what folks mean sometimes when they talk about a mountain top experience.

You see, I think climbing to the top of those rocks gave me and Dad some fresh perspective (and fresh air!). When you are looking down at the valley below, and see where you’ve come from, you feel like any problems you have are down in that valley too, and they aren’t nearly as big as they once appeared.

We spent a couple of hours on top of the rock, and then the people started coming up. We felt like it was probably time for us to go at that point. As we passed by others on the trail, we both found ourselves wondering if the people we passed would make it to the top. Would they get discouraged and turn around? Would they run out of steam?

Sometimes it seems like the odds are against you as you seek to attain goals. Sometimes problems emerge when you least expect it, and for a moment, it seems they will overwhelm you. There’s something about hiking that trail to the summit that teaches about perseverance too. Step by step, taking our time, we made it to the summit, and then we returned to our car.

Our problems, our fears, our anxieties, somehow seemed less significant and less overwhelming when we returned to the car, and when we eventually returned home. The problems didn’t go away (they rarely ever do) but the perspective and the refreshment we experienced during our brief stay on the mountaintop gave us hope and perseverance.

I think sometimes God gave us the hills so we could rise above our circumstances from time to time to get a fresh perspective—do you need some time on a hill top—even if you can’t go to Seneca, you can experience that refreshment by slowing down and letting Jesus give you the rest that he offers. The problems may still be there, but you will be refreshed and renewed if you take a little time for fresh perspective.

1 comment:

BrotherChuck said...

Great photo, and outstanding, thought provoking perspective. I'm 12 days from departing for Mt Whitney, and 14 days from the summit. I looked at it as an opportunity to share the experience with Nick; to enjoy the wonder of God's creation, both along the trail and at the summit; and to be "closer" to God, and to Mom. Now you've given me an additional perspective to consider and appreciate. I'm also about 3 weeks away from my 3rd WV visit within the last year. I'm hopeful we can visit the fish camp, and perhaps the lofty perch which you so frequently visit.