I offer two images today that I did not make happen. We were on a hike after two solid work weeks. We were aiming to take a rest, some re-creation, to gather some beauty. I could show the images from the waterfalls, or the lovely plants along the path, of my grandson’s smile, of the big Lake Superior’s sunset. . . a feast of beauty; but it is these shots that really deeply spoke to me. They are not even pointing to anything concrete. They came unsolicited into my iPhone. The device must have remained on, while inside my pocket in between my grabbing it for a shot. Somehow the little wonder of my phone kept clicking away and there were maybe 20 of these frames that day, some intensely beautiful. I am removed therefore from the selecting of these. I just get to enjoy them. The shimmer and the glimpsing of light through the fabric of my nylon pants, is like a gift I did not expect, as I walked the path.
Around the same time I was reading Frederick Buechner’s “Magnificent Defeat,” and also pondering the words of Peter’s first letter to struggling Christians. Rich words those, from two mentors. Peter encourages hard choices in hard places, but does not assume this can ever be done alone. He shows the enabling example we have, he tells of the rewards coming and he reminds that it is possible “if you have tasted the kindness of the Lord.” I have been holding onto the sweetness of that phrase and what it points to, then seeing the evidence right inside my pocket.