Eagle Cliff

Only one week left here in Colorado. wow.

The YMCA is surrounded by mountains of all levels of majesty, and it's fun to stare the range around us and imagine a sudden transport to the summit... to look back at the spot you're standing from miles away. Longs peak is behind our dorm... the three peaks of CC&Y to the front.

The nearest rock pile that could possibly be labeled a mountain is "Eagle Cliff." A short walk from our dorm to the base, the cliff overlooks Moraine Park - the center of the National Park, as well as Estes Park, and the Y. Not that I knew this from experience - just pictures. Although many people make this their first hike, I decided here in my last week that I should probably try it out - maybe as my last hike. :)

Just me, my Camelbak, and God this morning as I set off on the trail - which immediately appears to go straight up the side of the mountain. It feels like that too - leg burn that requires short rests every 50 feet.

And I invited God into my thoughts.

Maybe the hiking-as-life metaphor is overdone, but it found me anyway. While hiking I lost the trail. I had to rest often. I few times I felt discouraged - my legs hurt, my lungs were uncomfortable, and it the goal of reaching the top became less important. "why would I need to continue?" I wondered. "I'm content with how far I've gone," something in my head stated. "stop. feel better," my knees said.

I told a group of people at dinner the other day that I'm not like Nick. He likes to summit mountains for the challenge. I said that I don't find that my motivation. Beauty is the reason I hike, but if it becomes unpleasant past a certain level -I don't see a reason to continue.

This is how I find myself living my spiritual life. Forward moving until it hurts - then, when it does (and it always does) - seeking immediate rest, pleasure, and escape. And more disconcerting: I don't know if I really have a strong desire to summit the mountain that God has me on. Survival, and nice interludes are enough to make me content. If the top hurts too much - if the weather is too inclement - I'm done.