Saturday, April 27, 2013

Remaining with the One who sends us

From the Old Testament to the New, the Bible is filled with the reassurance that God is present always present, knowing us and our circumstances intimately. During the past two weeks, for a variety of reasons, I have felt uneasy and alienated from this world.  These Scriptures remind me that regardless of where I go, regardless of where I am, I can always choose "to remain with the One who sends me, and there find comfort, companionship, grace, peace, and joy." (Rueben Job)

La Grande, OR

Key Summit, Routeburn Track, South Island, NZ

Rowena, Columbia Gorge, OR

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Alleluia, the You Tube link to a blend of the vocal and the visual

Last fall, I enjoyed the wonderful opportunity to collaborate with Dr Peter Wordelman at Eastern Oregon University and the Chamber Choir he teaches.  Peter is a master teacher who brings in talented students and stimulates them to do pieces they never thought possible.

This piece, "Alleluia," was composed by Eric Whitacre who grew up in Australia, and now resides in both Great Britain and the US.  The images take you through the seasons of eastern Oregon.I greatly enjoyed the synthesis of the vocal and the visual.  Here is the link to the You Tube piece.

An infinite God seeks and desires intimacy with the human soul

A friend of mine, Nicole, shared these thoughts this week. They are profoundly important for each of us to absorb and live each day:

Be still, and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10

Your worth does not depend on what you do.  You are loved by God and your life is important because you are His child, made in His image.  If you start your day with anxiety about all you have to do or what you’re going to be, remember this: He loves you not because of what you do, but because you are.  The details of your life are important, but do not define your worth. 

Be still and know that I Am God
Be still and know that I Am
Be still and know
Be still

Cove, Oregon

The Honeycombs, Oregon

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

The Honeycombs

The Honeycombs are one of the most obscure, most spectacular canyon areas in Oregon. Located northwest of Jordan Valley, along the Owyhee Reservoir, the area has been one of my backpacking meccas.  A somewhat gnarly 4WD road takes you within a couple miles of where this canyon country begins.  The road is clay, and is not to be trifled with in wet weather, as it turns slick and greasy. Rob Ostermann, a friend with a similar passion to explore, and I drove down there last week.  Twice we attempted to reach the drainage where the hike begins, and twice threatening weather turned us back.

I did get some alluring pictures from afar, and the goal remains to actually reach into this scenery close up another time. The Honeycombs road takes off from the Leslie Gulch road, so we camped there instead and enjoyed the scenery you can view in my Leslie Gulch post.

Leslie Gulch

A vast land of magical shapes, spires, and walls, Leslie Gulch lies in the Owyhee river country of the extreme southeast corner of Oregon. I am drawn there in the springtime, when wildflowers and bird songs fill the canyons formed by volcanic tuff--ash that has consolidated through heat and pressure in solid rock. Wind and water have sculpted these walls into an infinite number of patterns. Early evening and early morning intensify the colors.

Overarching the light and the colors of this canyon, is an incredible feeling of awe, wonder, tranquility, and timelessness that dwarfs our mere short term human experience.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

"Lights, camera..." my action or God's

I was raised in an era where the phrase "lights,  camera, action" was popular. It was a catch word for what we as individuals, the "directors" of our lives,  could accomplish on our own.  I find I continue to be influenced by that concept.  I can choose "my" words, "my" thoughts, "my" actions. Yet my plans frequently result in an obvious, sometimes a subtle, dissatisfaction or mild depression.  Only when I align my way with God's love, mercy, and justice do find lasting hope and fullness. 

The paradox of possessions: If I try to keep my things, I lose them; it I give them to God, they are preserved and purified in Heaven.

"The principle runs through all life from top to bottom.  Give up yourself, and you will find your real self....Keep back nothing.  Nothing that you have not given away will ever be really yours.  Nothing in you that has not died will ever be raised from the dead.  Look for your self, and you will find in the long run only hatred, loneliness, despair, rage, ruin, and decay.  But look for Christ and you will find Him, and with Him everything else thrown in."  C.S. Lewis

Pueblo Mts, Alvord Desert, eastern Oregon