Greetings this Truth Bomb Tuesday from my favorite place in the world: Lake Tahoe!
I feel that I can confidently call Lake Tahoe my favorite place for two main reasons.
- I have been blessed to travel on mission trips since I was in my 20’s, and I’ve visited almost every continent with many beautiful spots along the way. This includes skiing and teaching my children to ski in the Andes mountains of Chile, while we lived there as missionaries. While I have seen much of God’s beauty in His creation in all these places, Tahoe has been and remains my favorite spot for its breathtaking beauty.
2. While many beautiful spots on this earth hold unique beauty in one season or another, Lake Tahoe holds equal beauty, winter, spring, summer or fall!
From the time I was a young girl in 4th grade, and was riding a bus up the mountain at 6:00 am on Saturdays to hit the ski slopes, I have felt God’s presence in that setting in a unique and real way. It begins with my eyes as they view the same mountains covered from top to bottom in evergreen trees, and capped at their peaks with a blanket of snow. My ears hear the breeze rustling through the trees as if to speak God’s still small voice to me in a whisper, that He is near. My nose takes in the fresh scent of pine and clean alpine air. My taste buds tingle as they are refreshed by the cold, clean pure mountain water. No bottled or filtered water needed here. I feel the touch of the cold air on my face, and it makes me feel alive.
Look at what the Hebrew psalmist wrote:
“Praise the Lord from the earth,
you creatures of the ocean depths,
fire and hail, snow and clouds,
wind and weather that obey him,
mountains and all hills,
fruit trees and all cedars,
wild animals and all livestock,
small scurrying animals and birds,
kings of the earth and all people,
rulers and judges of the earth,
young men and young women,
old men and children.” Psalm 148:7-12
The connection between God’s created being—me—and God’s creation occurs when I interact with it. In the winter, for me it is skiing. What is it for you? Do you walk through a snow-covered meadow? Do you walk on a windy beach, wrapped in a warm blanket? When we come up in the Spring, it’s still Tahoe, so I can ski some more. Do you like to drive through the flower fields? In the fall, I love to travel up to Apple Hill, where there are hundreds of acres filled with apple and pear trees. I can stop in at any of a dozen bakeries, and enjoy the delectable treat of an apple donut, caramel apples, warm apple pie, and of course, just the crisp fresh taste of a variety of apples.
And now, it is summer, the season we find ourselves in. Summer offers a myriad of opportunities to enjoy His creation in various ways, and of course, VACATION! While some of you may lead strenuous lives and find no time for vacation, God desires and dictates that we all take a time of rest from our work. And I believe that we rest best when we are in His creation, one of His best gifts to us, and with our loved ones, His greatest gifts to us. So today, I find myself extremely blessed: in my favorite place, and with my favorite people, enjoying God’s creation together.
After one of our family favorite healthy breakfasts—whole grain toast topped with a fried egg, sliced tomatoes and avocados—we headed out for the Truckee River Trail. Arriving in Tahoe City, we secured six bicycles, and one trailer to tow my two precious grand babies. We started at the Truckee Dam, where Lake Tahoe spills into the Truckee River. It is a popular spot to river raft, bike and hike. We biked while paralleling the Truckee River, no more than 20 feet away, mild and slow moving in spots, mimicking a lazy summer day, and full of occasional rapids, creating excitement for those rafting down it. The trees provided a natural canopy that shaded us the majority of the way. And the river produced a cool breeze on our trek. Our destination was my favorite spot in Lake Tahoe: Squaw Valley, USA. We paused only for a water break, a Luna Bar, and a family photo. In a few minutes we were back on the trail, passing again the beautiful Evergreens and Aspens, the ducks and geese sitting on logs in the water, and butterflies that floated across the air in front of us. In total, our ride was 10 miles!
“Praise him, sun and moon!
Praise him, all you twinkling stars!
Praise him, skies above!
Praise him, vapors high above the clouds!
Let every created thing give praise to the Lord,
for he issued his command, and they came into being.” Psalm 148:3-5
God’s creation connects the created to the Creator.
Where do you connect best with God? Maybe you enjoy trips to the park. Maybe you enjoy playing croquet or corn hole in your back yard. Maybe you enjoy riding the waves or splashing in the ocean at the beach. Maybe you enjoy walking in your neighborhood. Whatever you enjoy doing, God has made His creation for you—His created one—to enjoy! I realize that many of you enjoy reading good books, or listening to quality music, or watching entertaining TV programs or movies. Although those things can be enjoyable, God desires that we get outside regularly and actively engage Him in His creation. We were made to enjoy it, to experience it, to be a part of it. God didn’t create His world and nature for Himself: He created this world so that we—created in His image—could enjoy it! There is no greater way for us to feel His presence or understand what we were created for.
Enjoying His creation, and praying you are too!
Speak Truth Love