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.

Monday, September 21, 2009

On the Edge of a Molecule

“Would you like pancakes?” my wife asked yesterday as we were driving home from the church. It was early afternoon. “Need to run 8 miles of hill trails first, but you guys go ahead without me.” I had a marathon to run in a couple of weeks, and I was a little lean on training. I knew that a moderate length run with some technical challenge would be good, and I had just the place in mind. I was headed, once again, to Birch Island Park. Though the park is relatively small for distance running, I knew I could accomplish my afternoon goals with a series of repeats through this beautiful forest area. I was running toward Birch Island by 2:15pm on a delightful, sunny afternoon. I ran 8.15 miles over 1:52 hours. Yes! There were many climbs and descents, and twisting trails, rock scree, roots, and wonder. So much wonder beyond my mind for its beauty and majesty. Autumn is coming and the reds and golden colors are beginning to fill the woods. This season is perhaps my favorite time of the year, though each has its unique qualities. I ran easy into these divine displays of glory all abounding.

“Who is like you, O Lord, among the gods? Who is like you, majestic in holiness, awesome in glorious deeds, doing wonders?" [Exodus 15:11 ESV]

As we take to the trails to run the footpaths and breath in the fresh open air, we naturally expose ourselves to the divine; the nature of God as seen in His manifold creation, seemingly infinite varieties and captivating designs, wholly unknown vistas seen on the edge of a molecule or through an early morning droplet of dew clinging to a leaf. These are the things that transport us; cause us to shift our perspective and look with new eyes on things we have seen our whole lives, to see them as the handiwork of God. The trails reveal more than they appear. They are often pathways to apprehending the Lord, doorways to divine wonder. I guess that’s why we run. We run to know ourselves. And for some of us, we run to know Him more clearly. For me, I’m going to continue down these trails. Oh, to run hard and true, and to reach for a growing appreciation of His loveliness and glory. I’ll look for you just down the trail.

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