Tales of a Zekey Trip: Mountains and Desert

Psalm 13

1How long, Lord? Will you forget me

forever?

How long will you hide your face

from me?

2How long must I wrestle with my thoughts

and day after day have sorrow in my heart?

How long will my enemy triumph 

over me?

3Look on me and answer, Lord my God.

Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep

in death,

4and my enemy will say, “I have

overcome him,”

and my foes will rejoice when I fall.

5But I trust in your unfailing love;

my heart rejoices in your salvation.

6I will sing the Lord’s praise,

for he has been good to me.

As I look back and process our time on the Zekey trip, I remember that my favorite places were in forests filled with trees that smelled of pine and dirt, near crystal clear water that rushed over rocks. The air was fresh and I was filled in awe with every blink of my eyes. The trees provided shade from the sun and the rocks along the water, a place to rest.

MountDesert2

Tenaya Lake, Yosemite

I felt close to God. I felt the power of Him displayed in the beauty all around. I felt him in the rushing water and in the joy overflowing in our family.

MountDesert

Eisley looking out into Emerald Bay, Lake Tahoe

In the desert, as I stood in the sand, my feet were never clean and it was extremely hot. There was a day toward the end of the trip where I felt I could snap. I was sick of getting out of a shower and immediately dealing with kids’ dirty feet and legs due to the sand being kicked up and then sending them to crawl into freshly washed sheets.

In the desert, I learned I had to look up to see the beauty. It was when I lifted my head that I could see the mountains, full of unique texture and formation I could not have made up on my own. It was when I looked up that I could see the beautiful orange, red and earth-toned colored layers in the mountains.

MountDesert6

Arches National Park, Utah

It was the bigger picture that brought beauty, not necessarily where I stood.

And where I stood, there was still so much good. Even with the sand all over, I saw joy in my kids’ eyes and a proud husband showing his family the beauty he had seen just ten years ago, feeling like it had been his first time.

MountDesert3

Arches National Park, Utah

This came to my heart as I cried out Psalm 13 to God yesterday. I naturally related to David in the first 4 verses, but it’s verses 5 and 6 I’m struggling with. I then asked God to help me cry out the complete chapter to Him. He gave me this parable that I have shared with you. He reminded me that although I may not always feel His nearness or feel like He is moving in my life, He is making a beautiful story. He reminded me that although the sand is kicking up all around me, if I’d just look up, I’d see He is working and it’s going to be beautiful.

MountDesert5

Painted Desert, Arizona

Our family is in a season where we are walking along a hot and dry desert and the sand is clouding my view of God. I am over it and I am struggling. A part of me says, “God, I’ve lost my son, please have mercy on our family. I’m ready to be on the mountains in Yosemite, water rushing over rocks- where it’s really easy for me to feel and see you.”

It’s in these seasons of life, sand kicked up all around, we are called to trust God and His goodness, to stay true to what we know about Him, not necessarily what we are feeling at the time. This is where knowing God’s word helps to keep on the path of righteousness. This is where leaning on friends in your church family is vital. This is where, perseverance (steadfastness in doing something difficulty or delay in achieving success) comes into play.

1 Peter 1:7

“These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold–though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.”

Are you in the desert? Are you finding it hard to see God in all the kicked up sand? Cling to what you know is true of Him. Ask Him to show you Himself. I’ll be doing the same.

Blessings

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