Friday, 5 October 2012

Rocky Mountain High

The Golden Ears Mountains are what make the town of Maple Ridge, where we live, so beautiful. I can’t imagine this place without them. When I used to drive my children to school when we lived on the other side of town, we turned off our street and headed north on Cottonwood towards Dewdney Trunk Road where we got a perfect view of the Ears. I would tell my children ”just look at those mountains!” and I would use words like, breathtaking, spectacular, amazing, gorgeous, etc. My kids would say things like, “Yah, sure mom”, or “Are you okay mom?” I think they even told me to “gear down” a few times. But turning the corner and facing them straight on really did take my breath away.

Today I got a good long look at the Golden Ears. There is no snow on them right now, but it’s only a matter of time. For ten months out of the year, there is snow on those mountains and after a fresh dusting, it’s like “Wow, did you get a look at those Ears this morning?” Without snow, they look naked…all chiselled and really strong looking. It’s like “where do you work out?” That sounds silly, but it’s true.
I have only climbed the Ears once; with Mike, Peter, friends Colleen and Chris and our niece Jenny from Toronto. (When any family members come to visit, Mike assumes they want to climb the mountain…only some have taken him up on his challenge of adventurous fun…and pain). Mike has climbed the Ears a bunch of times, including one time with our three kids and a couple of their friends. Reaching the top gets you super high in more ways than one. You’re on top of the world and it’s incredibly inspiring, to say the least.

This past weekend, Mike and I and my mom and dad drove to Calgary to visit Madison at university and watch a couple of her hockey games. It’s a really long drive; about twelve hours, but the views are spectacular. It’s mountains and valleys all the way across B.C. and a little ways into Alberta; the Rockies spit you out just before Calgary and then it starts getting flat.
I can become very emotionally charged when I am surrounded by mountains. They remind me how small I am and how great God is. They also make me think about the highs and lows of life…the mountain top experiences and the times spent in the deep valleys.

Anyway, our reading from My Utmost for His Highest in the morning on Oct 1, the day we drove home, was very fitting. This is what Oswald Chambers said:                                                                   “We have all experienced times of exaltation on the mountain, when we have seen things from God’s perspective and have wanted to stay there. But God will never allow us to stay there. The true test of our spiritual life is in exhibiting the power to descend from the mountain. If we only have the power to go up, something is wrong. It is a wonderful thing to be on the mountain with God, but a person only gets there so that he may later go down and lift up the people in the valley. We are not made for the mountains, for sunrises, or for the other beautiful attractions in life – those are simply intended to be moments of inspiration. We are made for the valley and the ordinary things of life, and this is where we have to prove our stamina and strength.”
I dedicate this blog post to our friends, Neil and Donna (who I have blogged about before). Neil had PLS for six years and was recently diagnosed with ALS. Our hearts go out to you, with love and prayers.

“In the world you will have trouble, but take courage, I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
Mike and Nathan - Golden Ears climb, Summer '09
Erin and Madison
Erin and Amanda

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