I heard in a meeting once “that its not change that hurts so damn bad, its our resistance to it that causes so much pain.” I really couldn’t agree more. I am sitting here on the side of Mount St. Helens attempting to chase away my bitterness about this botched foot surgery and my new reality that 5mile hikes seem to be my limit. The pain inside is increasing as I think about how I used to venture in 3 times this distance. Yet, with anything, if all I felt was the pain of change I would have killed my self a long time ago. I have to have joy some where and sitting on this ridge searching for peace is my attempt to get it.
Abram and the boys pushed on to see further. I caught a small sight of them up the mountain and if the wind would stop long enough I can hear the echo of their voices. I honestly don’t remember the last time I sat and my surroundings were this quiet. Living in a house with two kids who have special needs I hear a lot of yelling, screaming and generally loud living. I feel my shoulders tense up just thinking about it.
Then from the silence I hear rock tumble on the mountain. I cant see it, but I know its there. It tumbles down and I’m reminded in this moment, I don’t have to be any where but here. The power of being in my kind of church where the lack of life’s distractions are absent. Senescing a flow of peace and the actual flow of being in the moment helps my brain and soul relax a small step at a time.
As I sit here I’m thinking about how this may be my new normal, full transparency? I am resisting big time while at the same time accepting. I go back and forth in the struggle. The deflation of ego is always a part of my life. It seems to happen without my permission. Most of the time it hurts like a S.O.B. Today the pain doesn’t last as long as it used to. I strive more to be accepting of what is as I am striving for better. My level of internal pain is usually a good guide for how far off the path I am straying.
I heard a song by Mercy Me called “Even If” and the song talks about trusting that no matter what an outcome Gods will for me is to believe everything is ok even when its not, and if God felt it was in His wills best interest for my life He would change my situation but that my goal is to find a place inside that I can say “it is well with my soul” no matter if God says yes, no or not right now.
Sitting here with my foot slightly throbbing I wonder the big three letter question, WHY!? Why did this happen to me? Why cant this just be made better? Why why why?
Acceptance is that sometimes things don’t always work out. Things don’t always go back to the way they were. The older I get the more I realize somethings change forever. Yet, life goes on. Even though I cant continue on the trail doesn’t mean Abram and the kids should stop too. My goal is to be happy on the side of the mountain where ever I am, even if the place is 2.5 miles in, 6 miles in or .5 mile in.
Where there is change, there is grief. Hiking isn’t just a hobby. It is inspiration. It is connection. It is a place I connect with God in a most powerful way. It’s church. The place I’m in feels like an artist who had surgery to fix a minor problem in there finger and is left with minimal use of there hands.
The struggle within to find peace in the new reality is real. God is on the job and I’m on the side of this mountain for some reason, I’m just not sure what yet. I liken this space of change to the social experiment when you put a blind fold on for a day and all the other senses a heightened. Right now my blindfold is my foots maximum distance is 5-6 miles. Other senses are becoming heighten I’m just not all that sure what they are yet. That’s Gods work.
What I can say is for the first time in several months our drive to this trailhead things felt, hopeful and happy. Our drive here was full of laughter, music, conversations and joy.
Mystery of what lays ahead for us on the trail is still yet to be seen. For today this view is going to work just fine and I don’t mean the view of the mountains, even though they are spectacular, no I mean the view within.
The view within that carries the peace that surpasses all understanding.
The view within that settles all troubles.
The view within that no matter what storms rage, the rays of peace and truth shine down.
The view within that brings hope of things getting different, maybe not better but different.
This is the view that I sought in the bottom of a bottle. The one I seek in my pointless quest for perfection that I will never find.
This is the view within that the darkness says I don’t deserve. The view within that is mine.
The calm in the storm and the song of victory, this is the view I seek and i can find it no matter where I stand. The truth is peace and grief can exist together. Both are important and neither can be forced.