Some people find God and some never find God.
Some people find God in their children, at their workplace, through their friends or on the corner of first and Amistad.
I find Him in nature.
If I pay enough attention, I see Him not just in nature, but everywhere. If I am honest, my children have led me closer to God more than anything else.
But my soul, the fibers of my body, humm and vibrate in unison with the pulse of nature. And I find God. He gathers me to him, like a child to his mother's breast and a soldier to his King's feet, in love and fealty.
I was reminded of how God works on me in that way when we went on a ten day hunting trip in October.
After an 11 hour drive to Eastern Oregon with 3 kids under 5, even a dry camp looked like an oasis in the desert by the time we got there. The kids scampered out around the clearing in the woods as soon as their seat belts clicked off. I scampered over to a thicket of wild roses that were packed with cherry red rose hips, just waiting for me to harvest them. The Firefighter scampered away to give his ears and bladder a rest. We were all quickly called back, as my parents had stayed in camp the night before and had heard of very inquisitive bears in the area. Oh right, we weren't in Disneyland.
No running water and no electricity meant few dishes, no laundry, and no showers for 10 days. We were gloriously filthy. We smelled to the bone of wood fire smoke and pine needles. The kids rolled luxuriously in the dust created by dry mountain air. Our only bath was in the soul-cleansing full moon that nearly shown like the sun in the dark forest night.
Every day, we woke before the sun had considered rising, drank a cup of steaming camp coffee and snacked on homemade jerky, sourdough crackers and salty soaked almonds. In the dim pre-dawn, we took turns keeping the kids quiet and hiking into the wild country in search of elusive antlers. Some days we covered two miles of steep mountain before the hills were fully lit.
Evenings were spent by the campfire after a long afternoon hike and peaceful sunset. Our bellies were full from hearty dinners and our bodies at rest. We raised our voices in song with the guitar. I imagined the music floating to the moon and drifting through the trees; the sound ebbing and flowing into nearby clearings, a lullaby to the forest.
Even after constant "unsanitary" conditions, near death cougar experiences, absolutely no meat hanging in camp, a few bloody patches and rolled ankles, I would argue our bodies and minds had never been healthier.
He doesn't have to, but He gives us gifts.
My Kids playing with matchbox cars and a tea set