Friday, August 15, 2014

For the Days When the World & I are Overwhelmed

There are days...weeks, really, that are just too much.
As I check the news each morning, I feel the press, the weight, the burden pressing down on my mind and heart.
Gaza. Israel. ISIS. Iraq. Syria. Ukraine. Russia. Ferguson. Guinea. Sierra Leone. Liberia. Ebola.
And as I get out of bed each morning, I feel the press, too.
The World's Worst Teether. A 10 1/2 month old who has decided she doesn't need naps....ever.
An almost 3 year old who wants to "DO IT MYSELF!" {and yes, it is in all-caps, because she screams it at the top of her lungs}, except go to the potty, that is.
We are supposed to be on summer break, but I feel most days that I'm the one that's gonna break.

Life seems to be only an uphill climb these days....
a hike with a 40 lb. pack or a 20 lb. baby or maybe both on my back.

The day we head to Kintampo Falls starts the same.
My *oboshi-baby on back and an uphill climb ahead of me.
We go up and up, around some rocks, and over the ones that are too big to circumnavigate.
I do a fair amount of exercise on a regular basis living here, but I'm breathing heavy when I reach the top.
The view is nice, a small waterfall pouring over the lip of a cave carved in the ledge of a rock.
Worth the climb?
I'm not too convinced.

Where are the huge, beautiful falls I've been told about?
This doesn't look like the pictures I've seen.

We snap a few photos, smile a bit, wonder if we came all this way just for a Kodak moment.
The guide notices our quiet.
"This is only stage one," he says.

Now we head down the trail.
The trees are beautiful.
A few more photo opportunities and then a stop at Stage Two.
Here we meet a small river working busily through the bush.
Some logs, some large stones, even less to see here than at Stage One.
And now the baby, and the bag, and the camera are pressing sore.
I'm pretty sure that I'll just take a breather at the trail side and not bother with Stage Three.
We've seen wild monkeys, clouds of butterflies, vicious army ants, ancient mahogany, and the intricate knots of the ficus vine that have lived long enough to become trees.
I'm satisfied.
I don't need to bother with the last of the hike.
Yes, I know it's all downhill, but do I want to bother with the uphill climb that follows it?

My curiosity gets the best of me
My ears prick as I hear the dull roar.
Down the 152 steps I go, hoping that the climb back up will be equal to whatever is at the bottom.
We reach the landing half-way down and catch our first glimpse of the falls.

I'm revived, energized, ready to get to the bottom and take in all the beauty awaiting me there.
Quickly down the steps, setting down heavy bundles, pulling off shoes, wading into the pool.
There is a wind blowing off the falls and I feel it washing away the weariness, the heat, the sweat.
Children are splashing, and baby is giggling, and I'm snapping pictures as fast as I can.
Drinking it all in.
Reveling in the glory that our Creator God  made....just because He could.

And these days,
these dark, hard days,
these days that feel like the burden is too great?

These are the days when our prayers, our tears, our reaching out to this broken world in big ways and little ways are like that last bit of the hike.....
Just waiting to reveal God to this thirsty, truth-starved, weary world.
Tumbling down in torrents of His amazing grace.

Only God brings life.
We are praying that many will find Christ in these crises.
We are clinging to the Hope that He is in these difficult days.

*oboshi ~ a Ga word that means chubby, and the nickname of my little chunker-baby, Mackay

** We had an amazing time visiting Kintampo Falls and the Boabeng-Fiema Monkey Sanctuary while my parents were here!


  1. Lovely post, in every way! Thank you for sharing your life and pictures--and for NOT combing the children's hair before you snap. Thanks for keeping it real!

    1. Ha! Lou Ann, that made me laugh! I was sorely tempted to NOT include the messy hair pics, but the joy on their faces was too much to pass up!

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  3. Wonderful, Patty Wonderful, I love you all

  4. Your words and photos gave me such a beautiful respite tonight. I remember those days of teething and I CAN DO IT MYSELF!!!! all too well. Thankfully they survived and now are 21 and 17. Seeing your children's sunny, excited faces brought me such joy!!!

  5. I hear you, Patty! I don't have quite the burdens to face as you, but I understand the climb. I have my days where I'm ready to give up at stage 1, let alone stage 2, but when I stick through it to stage 3...It is worth it all! :) Thank you for the beautiful analogy! Love you all and miss you much! Praying for you!