I kicked my feet up on the iron railing, leaning back and back in the plastic chair until I could see the largest patch of sky possible. It was 8:43 p.m. in a bustling tourist town. Dena and I had found the creek that ran behind our hotel and had dragged our chairs near its calm, craning our heads to see past the dumpsters and towering rows of hotel balconies, towards the best art show town had to offer.
Thunderheads always set the stage for the best sunsets, and tonight painted them pale yellow, then orange, then pink and then a silent deepening into purple and indigo. A scraggly walnut silhouetted itself blackly against the sky-painting, and canada geese waddled upstream in the creek, hardly lifting their heads to get a breath, eating under-water vegetation as if there was no tomorrow.
The creek water rushing over stones was almost enough to drown out the sounds of traffic. The air temperature was comfortable and perfect. There was just enough wind to disable any mosquito’s ability to fly. A snapshot of beauty and peace.
“This is a snapshot I will keep inside my heart.” I thought.
Do you know what I mean by snapshot–those pictures your mind takes of beautiful or meaningful moments and keeps for you to review at the end of the day?
This was a beautiful moment, worth keeping to re-taste sometime later.
But deep inside me, I knew I wasn’t satisfied. My eyes kept straying to the outline of the Great Smoky Mountains–close enough to reach in an hour’s drive. Those towering ranges were everything the valley was not–wild, rugged, mysterious. I knew that if you dare to enter them–if you push on, past the danger and the gloom, past the days of cold fog and along the wind-blown ledges, through the bear threats and hypothermia, you will come to a day when the Creator opens the fog curtains to display a sunset like you have never seen.
You find yourself standing on top of the world, with coyotes howling below you, and a sheepish sun contouring a world of ranges around you with more brilliance and vibrant color than you will ever learn in a YouTube makeup tutorial.
Nothing blocks your view of the sunset at this altitude. Every direction you turn reveals a new masterpiece.
Mountaintops. I always crave them.
Driving down the road at dusk, eyes towards the sun, celebrating along with the painter, my mind always asks, “Is there a way I can see this beauty more fully? Is there a mountain near me? Can I drive to a high place before the display is over?”
I think it’s true, fellow warrior, that we were meant to be on top of the world. It’s abnormal to be satisfied with sunset views that are cut small by towering buildings and scraggly trees.
100% vision. 100% joy. That is what your inheritance is.
If you have a deep desire in you to be on a mountaintop–a place with an unblemished view, just ask. He came to open the eyes of the blind. He offers more, always.
Not just crumbs, although that is often all we ask for.
He offers more. More and more and more!