Many stories herein are subject to the faulty, and sometimes creative, memory of the blog owner and should not be taken as factual, although the names and events are real! Kind of.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

An Obliterated View

Almost every morning, God provides a gorgeous sunrise for our viewing pleasure as we eat breakfast and head to school and work. I'd love to take a picture, but there's houses in the way, and the apartments to the east have giant security lights that mess with the lighting.

Thursday's sunrise was particularly beautiful. There were leftover clouds from the storm, stretching like cotton all around the horizon, just translucent enough for the sky to show through, but with enough substance to capture the color of the sun and spread it out in new hues. The color stretched all around the earth in every direction, as the rays were caught and held as they passed through the clouds. The sight took my breath away, and I was so busy gawking at it on my way to work, I became a driving hazard! How I wished I had brought the camera!

Then I noticed all the high line poles, and wires, and more street lights, and traffic lights and other troublesome signs of civilization that obstruct the view. There is no place to take a picture of God's creation without man's presence in the way!

It was while driving, both awestruck at God's daily artwork and bemoaning the fact that I couldn't get a 'clear view of forever,' that I got to wondering about the women who've come before me.

The ones whose work included hanging clothes out to dry in the middle of miles of waving grass on an otherwise empty prairie. The women of the past living in a tiny forest cabin, with only her children and husband for company and who could see nothing but nature--tree after tree after tree, with no signs of any other human occupants to break up the bleak landscape.

Did the rhythmic pumping of a windmill annoy those long ago women, as they wished instead for the sound of people's voices? Did the roaring of the wind through the trees on a cold winter's night make the forest dweller all the more lonely for the cheerful talk with relatives around a warm and welcoming fireplace?

The cackling of chickens, the lowing of cattle, the twittering of birds, the sound of a solitary ax ringing through the forest--were they very small compensation for the missing sounds of friends and neighbors going about their daily lives in towns far away?

Even as I longed for an unobstructed sunrise vista, I pictured these lonely women, eyes searching the horizon for an approaching wagon, ears straining to hear the creak of harness and the clop of hooves above the sound of rushing water or blowing wind. I imagined the joy and excitement they must have felt when travelling to town for supplies, anticipating the sight of the cluster of buildings that signified the warmth of other women--of longed-for sharing and laughter and chattering about inconsequential things and friendships.

Me--longing for solitude. Yesterday's woman--longing for company. Neither of us satisfied.

We humans are never happy. We strive for more land, more houses, more things. Then decide to simplify. We pursue success and wealth. Then realize we really it is joy and contentment that we desire. Our daily lives in our jobs and family schedules provide constant human contact and activity. We crave solitude and peace.

Somewhere there's a balance to be found--between the solitary lives of the lonely pioneers and the activity for the sake of busy-ness of the urban dweller.

But will we ever find true satisfaction in our life here on earth? Can we find it? Or do we have to wait till Heaven to have an unobliterated view?

Lift up your eyes to the heavens, look at the earth beneath;

The heavens will vanish like smoke, the earth will wear out like a garment

And it's inhabitants die like flies.

But my salvation will last forever,

My righteousness will never fail. Isaiah 51:6


Sarah Castor said...

Those are some very beautiful pictures! And a very inspirational blog!

FLO said...

You definitely brought back some memories for me Dawn! Thank you! Part of the earlier part of my life was spent in the Texas Panhandle. We had a windmill in our yard and oh, that rhythmic sound. Milk hitting the bucket too. I miss the sounds and smells of farm life. Gathering eggs. I love to hang clothes on the line too. No lines here tho :(. God bless you for bringing up happy memories for me!

One Last Thought.......

Pleasant words are a honeycomb;
sweet to the soul and healing to the body.
Proverbs 16: