Natalie Ogbourne

We set off, my family and I, into the high desert. Unfamiliar territory, it was marked by slot canyons and stark terrain. We were mountain hikers, more accustomed to treading over soft, tree-lined paths than through stony expanses. Trailhead signs warned that heat kills, admonishing all who dared pass to carry two liters of water. Both seemed overzealous in the cool autumn morning—until I remembered: deserts change with the seasons. Spring rains and summer heat would transform this temperate landscape into something searing and tumultuous.

Parched though it is, Utah’s slick rock is not dry and thirsty ground ready to soak up precipitation. It comes with warning signs of its own: Be aware of the weather. In case of heavy rain, seek higher ground.

Sparsely vegetated slopes offer little resistance to the water that courses downhill, surging through canyons and gulches, creating pools, lakes, and rivers along the way. Rainfall rivers can last for days, weeks, or even months. Filling them is a monumental event. Even in dry seasons, you can see where they’ve been and where they will be again.

Twenty-nineteen started out in the usual way, with all the usual things. Late winter brought new things to my two daughters and our family. For one, a minor injury transformed into a painful, chronic nerve condition and, for the other, what looked like a dermatological issue was diagnosed as something far more than skin deep. In the space of a few weeks, a typical year became a trying one and as 2019 neared its close, I whispered that I was ready for it to end. Meaning, I suppose, that I wanted to move on and my hope, my assumption, my expectation, was that a new year would bring new scenery.

You and I know that’s not always how it works.   

I’m an outdoor gal. Drawn to scripture that highlights creation because it speaks a language I understand, I look at the natural world and learn more about walking by faith from what I see. Unfortunately though, I’m not just an outdoor gal. I’m an outdoor girl with romantic notions about life. Sometimes, those romantic notions cause me to miss the truth I need to know because I’m busy looking for what I want to see. Maybe you know a little about that. 

You can read the rest of this post over at Lyli’s place, where she she shares all about fuel for a wildfire faith. 

Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure. Proverbs 4:26