Thursday, September 17, 2009

Feeling Connected

One thing I've always loved about being alive is being outdoors. Experiencing God's creation as He intended it can be beautiful and grounding. I grew up with family summer vacations consisting of camping, and with two boy scout brothers and a boy scout dad, I was instilled very young with a wonderful awe and respect for nature.

Think about the Gospel, and how many important events happened in the stillness of nature: Joseph's prayer in the Sacred Grove, Christ's atonement in the Garden of Gethsemane, and Adam and Eve's Celestial-like life in the Garden of Eden. I have a very firm belief that God uses the beauty and power of nature to help us feel more connected to Him.

Tonight I had the opportunity to go to Provo Canyon for a bonfire and marshmallow-roasting a professor of mine put together for his class. Feeling the damp grass between my toes while looking up at the stars (something I don't get in the city), I experienced that feeling of connectedness with God.

Sometimes I feel closer to God when I'm in nature than I do anywhere else. I'm reminded of a line in my favorite book, The Poisonwood Bible:

"Do you think God wrote it all down in the English King James Himself? When I want to take God at His word, I take a peep out the window at His creation. Because that, darling, He makes fresh for us daily, without a lot of dubious middle managers."

1 comment:

Cameron said...

Check out up the south fork of Provo Canyon. I discovered it 2 years ago on a spontaneous weekend mountain-biking trip. Amazingly beautiful, peaceful, no inversion air in the winter, cooler in the summer.

You turn right at Vivian park and just drive up the canyon a few miles where there are several parks along the way. My wife drive up there and sometimes go for a walk, at least once per season. President Monson used to fish here as a boy.

We love it because it's the best combination of convenience (15 minutes away) and solitude. The Payson scenic byway loop to the east of Mt. Nebo is also amazing.