And in that moment I don’t feel so weak. My posture straightens and I feel peace. You lower Your hand and You pull me out. It is Spring and there is new life everywhere. You reach out Your hand and with a sweeping motion You push the dirt back in the hole. You lower Your hand with Your palm down and flip it over and raise it up. Nine billy balls and sunflowers come up out of the dirt. You look at me and You say, “I know you thought you knew what love was…but now I am going to show you. Take my hand and trust me and I will make your life beautiful. Be patient I have some cool stuff to show you.” #Psalm30
I hear a noise upstairs coming from the attic. It's quiet; it's subtle. I continue to stare and the noise picks up speed. It grows louder and louder. I watch as the reflection begins to show a different face. She begins to look around with curious eyes. The noise increases its presence; pounding rapidly. The reflection looks me dead in the eyes and I freeze. With a stern, impatient tone she says, "What are you waiting for?"
You can spend your whole life traveling and seeing and experiencing the coolest things…but you might find there is something still missing. Someone to share it all with. I’m excited for my future and I patiently await with anticipation, seeing the faces of the cards as they fall.
2 years later that little girl has grown. She has grown into a woman. Her optimism has benefitted her. She is no longer lost and she lives free and weightless. She breathes deep and lives boundless. She rediscovered her roots and planted them deep. At one point she was surviving and now she is thriving. She resides far from the shadow that he casted. She has created her own.
Years ago I learned a valuable lesson in church about “life sentences.” The series talked about the power of words. The things we say and the effect they can have on others. And also that we choose the impact that words spoken to us from others have on us personally. We choose to allow someone to offend us or make us mad. We choose the length of time and the magnitude in which words spoken to us influence our life.
This trip really has been about being on the other side of healing; rejoicing. I rejoiced at every place we visited. I'm thankful...so thankful for life and living it; for the adventures we were experiencing and for the ones that are ahead of me. I have learned to openly embrace life. The joy, heartbreak, challenges; all of it. Without sorrow, joy wouldn't be so sweet. Without heartbreak, love might take things for granted. Without death, life would mean nothing. I've never breathed so deep and felt so fulfilled.
We stopped at one of the Coastal Access points and walked the path that overlooked the cliffs. There was a small peninsula that occupied a little pocket of the ocean. Beautiful cliffs adorned the sides of the walkway out to the endless blue. The peninsula had rare plant species sprouting out from the rocks and the dirt. I was mesmerized by the most unique succulents I have ever seen. Green succulents that made the abrupt decision to turn red on the tips of their puffy pointy leaves. The flowers, yellow, orange and purple, all competed for the spotlight. The plants clothed and gave life to the bare, stagnant cliffs. The ocean crashed in trying to get a peek from below. It spat and raged at the rocks and turned white with fury as its waves came in for a ferocious landing.
We approached a beach with access off the road and turned in. Although it was foggy, this beach was still very beautiful. We trudged through dark gray/brown sand and I marveled at the charcoal colored smooth stones on the shore. The waves crashed on the beach threatening to become the master of anyone who dared to advance the line it made in the sand. The misty look made the beach feel mysterious. Like anything could happen. I felt like I was walking the beach with Chris Martin in Coldplay’s “Yellow” video. It was actually pretty cool to see the beach in this attitude.
We got down the road a ways and I looked up at the sky. Immediately I was breathless. I told my Dad he was going to want to pull over and see this. He stopped at the next turnout and we got out of the car. The stars were absolutely breathtaking. What made it even better was there was a new moon, so the stars were the main attraction. There has only been one other time that I have seen so many stars and that was in Flagstaff, Arizona at a star observatory. My Dad was in awe and said he had never seen so many stars. I could’ve stayed there all night dumbfounded. It was a beautiful moment and a wonderful memory.
The way down was interesting. I fully acknowledged this thought in the back of my head that if I fell and hurt myself no one would be coming to my rescue. There was no one following me and certainly at that point no one coming up to the top that late in the day. My phone had also died at the top of the mountain so I would not be able to contact anyone if something did go wrong. The trail was definitely physically demanding. Going up was hard but going down required much attention and caution. There was loose gravel, wet rocks, rocks with a coat of dirt that were more slick than the wet rocks and at some points there was water flowing down the middle of the trail. Also, if you remember, my shins and the rest of my legs were hurting pretty good from the downhill run and hiking from yesterday.