Tuesday, November 18, 2008

I Go to the Hills...

There is a place very close to my heart here in Salzburg. It has been an unusually warm Autumn for the Austrians, and I've tried to take advantage of it in the weekday afternoons by taking the lift to the top of the Monchsberg. The Monchsberg is a mountainside, and at the top there is a museum and an entrance to a large park. I take the trail through the park as it winds around to the most beautiful view in the world (in my opinion). I find my parkbench, and I sit and I journal and I gaze in awe. I listen to the leaves rustling in the trees. I listen to the elderly Austrian couple speak in hushed Deutsch to each other. (Sometimes I pretend that my Deutsch is good enough to know what they're saying)... I smell the crisp, clean air of the Alps and the scent of Autumn on its breeze. There is nothing in the world like that sense of being drawn to a place, and feeling that God has met you there. I stare at a mountain, and I think about my life and what I'm doing with it. And when I'm not there, when I'm sitting on a train packed in like a sardine and I'm reduced to a weary and smelly and hungry and agitated traveler, I dream of that place. Come Monday afternoon, when classes are over and there's still enough sunlight for me to get up there and back, my feet can't carry me fast enough.
And when I get there and I sit down, I hear Him ask me, "So how was your weekend? Is there anything you are struggling with today?"
And I tell Him everything. And then I feel compelled to ask Him, "How can I praise You more for this? Can I ever praise you enough?" And then I feel compelled to say, "I don't think I ever could thank you enough. I don't think I ever want to stop praising you for this."


(Seek out your mind and your heart and His voice actively.)