December 27, 2011

I lift my eyes...

{Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.}
John Muir

The Allegheny Mountains of Pennsylvania. 

I was born in those mountains. My first cry was uttered among their valleys, my first home among them. A part of me will always be in those mountains. Though I did not live there long, I spent a good third of my childhood there visiting my grandparents. Looking upon those mountains I see the shadows of my younger years dancing and trotting around, fishing and wading in their streams, running along their valleys and up their slopes. There is nothing so comforting as those mountains. As Muir said, peace flows in me when I go there. Winds blow freshness into my spirit and cares fall away. Nothing clears my mind, corrects my perspective like gazing at this view: the rolling blue mountains, the green and gold fields and the jade streams. 

What is it about this beauty that is so calming, so comforting? It plays through my mind in times of sorrow, so much so, that I painted a humble remembrance of the sight for my room at college to console my homesick heart. Perhaps it is in this beauty that God shows us a glimpse of how beautiful He is. He painted the travelling clouds, planted each stretching tree, smoothed each hill, and cut each hole in the clouds to pour the sunbeams through. This familiar view never ceases to push the tempo of my heartbeat and shock my breath into tiny gasps. To even think that He is more beautiful than this? Unimaginable. And Heaven, his masterpiece? Greater than this? Unthinkable.

Of course Heaven is the utmost home, but we have homes on earth too. This is one of them. Its familiarity is comforting. Almost twenty years I have been loving this place. It only becomes dearer since I get to see it less now. Nothing is more dear than a familiar memory except a familiar sight. 

Perhaps to the eye it is not the most amazing sight, this picture of my grandparents' view. It is certainly not the most dramatic, amazing or unusual in the world. But I cannot help thinking it is the best. It is where I would run to if I ever was faced with a great uncertainty, a big problem. It is almost easier to be with God there, unhindered by the trappings of normal life, of industrialized cities and the society they bring. It is the best place to think and listen to Him. Nowhere can I see Him better.

It is, to me, the best view on earth.

I wish I could say it more profoundly, more beautifully, but I can't. 

No comments:

Post a Comment