Monday, February 15, 2010

Worship

Recently I stumbled on a new blog called, "Through the Lens of Worship." The idea behind it is to take your camera outdoors and use photography as an act of worship to God. Today, I decided it would be a good time to try it.

Shortly before I headed out to the woods, I received an email from a close family member saying that his cancer was back. Last week had come news that my brother-in-law's cancer was not responding well to medication. And my worry about Ryan deploying increased this week for reasons I won't go into. Yes, it was time for some worship.

Taylor babysat so I could take a walk. I grabbed my camera and off I went. I walked awhile just taking photos of things that caught my eye, praying for my family members and hoping to experience God while I was out there freezing my butt off. Just keepin' it real...

As I walked deeper into the woods, it got darker as the trees blocked the sun. I started talking to God and telling Him that the path I was on in life seemed darker recently, just as the path in the woods was getting darker. I told Him that I was in the valley again. "Look up," I felt Him say. "I am here. If you continue to look at the darkness of the pathway, you will not see Me."

So, I looked up. I'm smart that way.

If you look at the photo, you will see that the path is not illuminated by the sunshine, but if you look up into the treetops, you will see the warm glow of the sun.

I continued to walk slowly, trying to look up without tripping and breaking my ankle on the uneven ground. As I came around a bend, I saw something that quickened my steps.


The sun was dipping closer to the pathway! I instinctively started to pick up my pace and almost run toward the dappled light shining through the trees. I wanted to see if it would touch the path. I wanted to stand in it's warmth.


Sure enough, the light beams touched the path and I was able to stand in them. "Thank you, Jesus," I breathed, "for hugging me with these sunbeams. Then I decided to turn around to see the source of those sunbeams. I saw this:


And I felt loved. Enveloped. Connected to the One who loves me.

The sun was setting and I was getting numb from the cold, so I reluctantly left the spot. The path got dark again and I told God so. And He gently reminded me that life is like that. The path we are on sometimes gets dark and cold. At other times, it is warm and full of light. We go in and out of peaks and valleys. But if we look up, He is always there.

"I lift up my eyes to the hills--where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth." Psalm 121:1, 2

19 comments:

Kim K. said...

Please know that I'm thinking and praying for your family. It sounds like you have a full-plate right now. Your pictures are absolutely breath-taking. Hugs!!

Ally said...

what a meaningful post! I sure needed that. Love the idea of using your camera to worship. thank you for sharing and being real.

Sharon said...

Karin, I'm so sorry your worries are piling up right now, but I'm so glad God was able to calm your fears. Beautiful pictures!!! Thanks for sharing.

Tori said...

Amen!!

Adeye said...

What a stunning post, my friend. How wonderful to know that the Father wrapped you in His loving arms and breathed peace into your aching heart!

Sending you a HUGE hug today.

James, Dawn and Family said...

Lots of hugs!!

Donna said...

Beautiful!!

Just what I needed to hear!

Kristin Ferguson said...

I love visual imagery like this.Your pictures are beautiful!!! I love the reminder that when we have our head down in despair, we miss not only the light up above but the source of that light as well. I'm going to go stand in a sunbeam right now and worship!!! Thanks for the reminder.

Kristin

trustandobey said...

This is a perfect post for me today.How did you know:)???
Sorry to hear of your family's health issues. Those go right to my heart. Praying for Ryan daily (and Nicholas too). Adding you to the list today too.
Lisa

sara said...

oh my word that was beautiful!! And I needed to hear that today....and I especially need to look up.

Holly said...

Great stuff. I love how the Lord ministers to us so personally!

Mom/Gramma said...

Hi Karen,

I was brought to your blog today and just had to comment.....

Thank you SO much for posting this and for the beautiful photos that illustrate so perfectly your heart before the Lord and His response to your heart! Beautiful.

Reminds me that I need to take time to have time alone with Him.

Dauna.
(I'm Lynsay Lewis' Mom)

Skeller said...

I love your photographs (you can come to me for Spring, and I'll come to you for Winter. deal?). But even more than your photos, I'm deeply touched by the way God spoke so gently and clearly to you.

Cari said...

i love this post, Karin! it's what i certainly needed today.

"where does my help come from?...the Maker of heaven and earth"!

you captured this form of worship so beautifully in your photos.

Diana said...

I linked to your from Through the Lens of Worship, and I am so glad you came across the blog and chose to participate. Those are beautiful images, and even more beautiful is the time you were able to spend with God. I got the chills as I read through your story, and found myself reading faster so I could find out if the sunlight finally hit the path! Thanks for sharing what God has taught you!

Sarita Allen said...

Hi Karin, I am so glad you decided to join us in Through the Lens of Worship. I was checking out the links this morning and read your entry. I was very blessed by your experience and pray that you continue to know God's peace during this unsettling time. God bless you!

Rhonda said...

Hi Karin. I'm here from Through The Lens of Worship. This post was incredibly beautiful. I'm sooo glad you joined us this week. I love how you set out to meet God and He was there for you. It reminds me of Jer 29:13 that says, "You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all of your heart." Don't we serve an incredible God? I'm praying for you and for your friends this evening. Thank you again for sharing this with us.

Kelly said...

Stopping by from TLWorship... Thank you for literally taking us on the walk with you! I felt like I was walking right next to you - even sharing a tear!! God always gets through to us one way or another. Thank you for sharing your intimate quiet time with God.

Kimberlyn Totten said...

Karin- This really touched my heart. The pictures are a beautiful testiment to God's gentle whisper and HIs reminder to us, to always seek for Him along lifes path. Even in the darkness- He is there! Blessings-