Thursday, July 11, 2013

Backpacking, Experience, Expression

“That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled of the word of life;” 1 John 1:1. 

The sun is warm. A gentle breeze plays catch with the leafy shrubs. Birds fill the air with melodious choruses and anthems. 

I sit atop my favorite perch so far, a gray, rounded rock. Across the lake, a thousand diamonds of light frolic as if in sheer happiness for the day. Sabbath. Backpacking. Delightful combination. 

My reading pauses indefinitely. That… which we have heard… 

John, that beloved apostle, who braved all kinds of things we can’t even relate to, had an experience with Jesus. An authentic experience with the Author of true experience. He had heard the voice of Jesus, had seen His face, had looked on it for untold hours, even touched the very Desire of the Ages. Can you imagine?

Christ ascends. John’s experience continues, deepens, broadens, until he can say -years after Christ has gone behind the curtain of space, “Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us.” 1 John 3:1. Because John did, he could say “Behold.” Why tell your friends to study a painting of which you have no knowledge? 

You can’t. 

That experience, is what I want. To know, not suspect, or surmise, or fancy, or imagine. To know and see with the soul, and not just the eyes. To look unto heaven and behold as if He were as close as my heart is to my eyes. That is what I crave for you.

But for John, it started with hearing. And in order for the beloved apostle to have heard, somebody had to tell him. 

A word, a look, a life as an expression of the God’s love, someone who did their duty as unto the Lord: somebody. told. John. 

The question burns in my mind: What am I telling John? Is it a testimony of Jesus, or temporary trifles? Do the words speak volumes of Life? Or death? Are we, like a pebble in a lake, dropping words which will reverberate in a blessing shared over and over and over? Do they bear the fruit of genuine experience in another? Another, who then goes a drops a pebble, in a lake? 

The appeal is to tell. Tell a tale of truth. Of Christ. Of Love. Of sacrifice. 

Tell it to be told again. 

GF Backpacking breakfast

Glow works as well in the woods...

Our lightened burdens ready to go home

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