Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Mountain Tops and Valleys…Holding Onto Faith

The kids recently had a fall break from school so Adam took a few days off to enjoy it with them.   One morning we chose to go climb Pinnacle Mountain.  This was a first for our family, with us all climbing together and without using any backpacks to carry the kids, though I think that may have been a mistake since Adam ended up carrying Ava Jane the entire way up and pretty much all the way down the mountain.   I don't think this activity will become a regular occurrence for us anytime soon, but we are getting there.

The morning was bright and clear, cool but comfortable…really, it was perfect fall day.  And to be honest, the kids actually did awesome.   Emerson climbed to the very top with nary a complaint which was fan-tab-u-lous.  It had been years since I climbed Pinnacle and I'd forgotten how steep it gets around the 8th and 9th markers.  There's a few spots where two hands are necessary for moving forward and up, which I'm sure you can imagine how challenging that would be while carrying a 32 pound little girl on your shoulders and/or on your hip, poor Adam!  But we had fun and we made it, which felt like a win all around!
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The boys enjoyed running at the beginning.  We tried to talk to them about walking and looking at exact spots for where to place their little feet, instead of jumping from rock to rock.  They did fairly well at obeying those requests.
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And Lawson likes to take any and every opportunity to climb a tree, so climb he did!
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The trail was really beautiful, the views and getting to see all the leaves beginning to change colors was really spectacular.  The boys were pretty amazed with the scene!

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Along the way we stopped for some rest and water breaks.
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Emerson, who has been into pictures recently, asked me to take several of him along our hike.
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The view from the top was really beautiful!  The boys were amazed at how tall the mountain was and I was reminded of how big my God is.  I'm so thankful that He holds the whole world in His hands, because today, when a sweet friends little girl has been put on the ECMO (heart/lung machine), a precious woman (a friend of my mothers) died unexpectedly this morning of a severe brain aneurysm  and another dear friend lost her Dad unexpectedly just minutes ago, I'm left in tears.  I'm thankful that I know that God is sovereign and that He works all things together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purposes.  But seriously, I struggle sometimes with how difficult and hard life is.  Thankfully, my God is big enough to handle my doubts, questions and fears.  I'm so thankful that though my finite mind can't comprehend the "how's" and "why's" of his purposes, I can trust His character.  The fact that He loves me immeasurably is such a comfort and He loves these sweet people and their families (who are affected and enduring these difficult, life altering situations).   As I was reading today about trusting God, this quote stood out to me, "God is too wise to be mistaken, God is too good to be unkind, so when we don't understand, when we can't see His plan, when we can't trace His hand, we must trust His heart." John 3:16 says, "For God so LOVED the world that he GAVE His only son that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but will have EVERLASTING life!  I love this verse with strong, descriptive words of who God is…"Oh Lord you are great, mighty, majestic, magnificent, glorious and sovereign over all the Earth and sky.  You have dominion and exalt Yourself as the Ruler of all." (I Chronicles 29:11)  I'm so grateful that He is who He says He is!  
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