Sunday, March 27, 2011
Living Water Hike
"The one whose hope is in the Lord is like a tree planted beside the waters that stretches out its roots to the stream."~Jer 17:7-8
Today we had a beautiful break in our very rainy and stormy weather...
It was a blessing to get outdoors to see the beauty of the lush green hills after a good rain, unfolding new life and signs of spring all around us!
After Sunday church services, Super Boy's Tiger Den (and families) ventured out on a nature hike! We headed for a historical trail close to a major river, just a short driving distance from our city limits. I couldn't help but reflect on the weekend's gospel theme of living water. Whoever drinks the water that I shall give him, says the Lord, will have a spring inside him, welling up for eternal life. ~John 4:13-14 How perfect was this? The river setting was a special place of grace to meditate upon the Word of God as the living water to cleanse and refresh the spirit.
A beautiful covered bridge (built in 1857) is the longest covered bridge still standing in our state. It's right around 330 feet long. I remember being able to drive through it when I was a kid but now it's only open to foot traffic. I think it's a spectacular backdrop to the glorious, rushing, fresh, river water.
Ready, set, go...A race to the other side!
Gotta love this quote.
These mighty Oak trees were pretty amazing. I paused to reflect upon the depth of my own roots in frequent prayer...Are they as sturdy as this Oak?
You can see the covered bridge through the trees here. Oh how this little boy loves to climb!
We all thirst, don't we? Thirsting for the living God, we cry out to Him. He cleanses us in His mercy. "I will gather you from the ends of the earth; I will pour clean water on you and wash away all your sins. I will give you a new spirit within you, says the Lord." ~Ez 36:23-26
I felt each step become a prayer of thanksgiving, almost beyond myself. It's as if our souls step outside ourselves when we are in the glory of His creation, becoming a compass pointing directly to Him.
Regardless of your beliefs, God whispers of himself through His infinite beauty. It is undeniably so.
The kids romped and rumbled along God's perfect playground on this, The Lord's day.
Pope Benedict XVI has a beautiful quote about nature:
"In contact with nature, a person rediscovers his correct dimension, rediscovers himself as a creature, small but at the same time unique, with a capacity for God because interiorly he is open to the Infinite." I'd like to add an Amen to that!
My thirst was quenched, my soul revived...
This hike was the perfect physical and spiritual rejuvenation as we approach the half way mark to our Lenten 40 days, this week.
I'd love for our whole family to do this hike together next year, using the same readings for reflection.
A nature hike transformed into a Living Water hike...I think we've just found ourselves a new Lenten tradition!