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Some of my stories are published in:
A Cup of Comfort Devotional for Mothers and Daughters (Adams Media, 2009)
Chicken Soup: What I Learned from the Dog (2009)
Love is a Flame (Bethany House, 2010)
Extraordinary answers to Prayer (Guideposts, 2010)
Love is a Verb (Bethany House, 2011)
Big Dreams from Small Spaces (Group Publishing, 2012)

Monday, August 23, 2010

Moose or Mountain Peaks?

Bruce and I were hiking the other day above Lake Brainerd. We go there each July to see the spectacular display of mountain wild flowers. The last two weeks in July is when they're in their greatest glory.
Anyway, just after we took the left fork in the trail around Long Lake I saw him. Big --very big - --with dark-brown fur. At first I thought it was a horse. Then, immediately my brain made the leap in reasoning. "Couldn't be a horse. What horse would be wandering around in the mountains -- at 10, 500 foot elevation --without an owner? Th-that m-means it's a-a-a MOOSE!"

In hushed excitement I called Bruce. "Get your camera, quick! Hurry up, before it gets away!" Bruce took a hurried shot and the picture didn't quite capture the moose's wide-eyed anxiety to hurry away into the obscurity of the thick undergrowth.

Bruce is a die-hard mountain peak sort-of-guy. That's what he usually takes pictures of. It's a wonder he's never stepped off the trail and plummeted to his death. He's always looking up at a mountain peak.

Me, I'm a small things kind-of-woman. I go gaw-gaw over tiny flowers and unusually shaped leaves. I'll stop to watch an Abert's squirrel and laugh at its antics. Or try to identify a bird's call. Or wonder why this aspen tree is blackened by a lightning strike and this one, inches away, escaped.

I sometimes wonder why Bruce even comes on these hikes; he misses so much. Those two bull moose we encountered weren't more than twnety feet off the trail, but he'd have walked right by them if I hadn't pointed them out. 'Cause he's always looking up at some mountain peak!

Then I thought, isn't it wonderful how God has made us so different? Bruce is a big picture sort of guy. I'm a detail person. Bruce likes big, grandiose music. I like understated, complex harmonies with lots of dissonance. I'm verbally creative, but I'm constantly yelling, "Bruce, help me!" when I run into computer quandaries. Bruce gets computers; I don't.

The longer I live, the more I'm amazed and humbled by the diversity of gifts, talents and interests displayed by others.

Many people love the mountains for their grandiosity. Something to be worshipped.
Others love the mountains for the sublime beauty of a shimmering river and the trout hiding just under the surface. Something to be harvested.
Some of us love the little plants, sheltered under the towering aspen and spruce. Something to be nurtured.

Similarly,we approach the Majesty of God, some with eyes to view the far-reaching horizons, others to hear and blend their voices with the music of the brook, still others, to build a rock cairn to point the way for other hikers.

"There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit." ( I Cor.12:4)


  1. Amen! It's it great that we have a God who is so creative that He can create for each of us?

  2. Thanks, Dena, for the gentle reminder to appreciate the different gifts we have received and celebrate the One who gave them.

  3. Yes, Loretta. We were talking about that in church just yesterday, how we should appreciate the small things, for they are the things that make up most of our lives. Nancy, isn't it wonderful that we're not all the same? Wouldn't it be a boring world? And who would fix my computer when it's on the fritz?