And the day God breathed upon your still life, stirring into being the green leaf and the flower, bud upon the branch and light
upon your soul. Here you felt the earth’s air on your petals and your leaves, and squinted into sunlight, gazing high for heaven
until you felt the gardener’s hand gently turning soil and soul, and nurturing you, bud in radiant sun.
Cascading rain absorbed in warm earth turning, heaven of fragrance. What is that sound in the wind and dazzling light?
Oh, the sweet sound of your delight in God. Sometimes it is like the sound of running laughter.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

The Sweet Incense of Resolve

Yesterday afternoon I hit the trails. Although winter still holds the area in a cold, cold grip, sometimes you just can’t wait around. You have to get out there regardless of conditions and simply enjoy the day. I was thinking how God always breaks through with His glorious artist palette – so I was keen to see what He had planned sensually in this day. Well, just so you know, yesterday He was working in bright sun colors and magical wood hues and ice wind edges for effect on a high-flung background of endless sky blue. It was all so totally beyond my words to say how beautiful. You had to be there.

So after lunch, a little before 2pm, I headed out toward Birch Island Park and those hills I’ve been working in recent months. The temperature was standing at 4F with NW wind at 16mph and gusts to 24; clear skies and gorgeous. I was out a bit over two hours covering 7.5 miles with 1282 feet ascending and 1290 feet descending. Yup, I found the hills and worked numerous repeats into my afternoon. It was so good for me. Much of my run I listened to the David Crowder Band setting my pace and keeping my mind on my Sovereign Lord, but toward the end of my time in the woods, I killed the music and focused on the silence in the woods; the breathtaking quiet; my footfalls and the stillness, and a few birds making a valiant attempt to inspire hope in warm days ahead.

It is out in the wild where I often meet God and talk through difficult things. I just lay it all out there and offer my worship and my prayers; the sweet incense of resolve and purpose; my trail runs becoming an expression of my earnest prayers. And at these times everything around me seems to become sacred; a cathedral of trees, wildlife blessedly dependant, and a deep and holy trust in the Lord. At times my accusers come to my mind and heart, spiritual adversaries bent on my destruction, and they say, “Why this waste?” [Matthew 26:8] Why so many miles and so much time on the trails? But you know, we are called to lavish praise on our Lord, to pour it out, to go beyond and exceed the normal things. I dare not limit, I dare not constrain my worship for one so mightily worthy of every ounce of my strength. We serve a risen and glorious Savior, an extraordinary Sovereign. Oh, let me pour out my strength for Him to the last measure, to the last breath! This is my high joy and purpose, and this is my call; and the trails are just the place to magnify Him in all seasons. Come run, dear friend. Run your race for Him. The sun is high and the day is always new.