Sometimes, when things don’t go as planned, you stumble upon little treasures that reveal something incredible.
This is one of my best buds/lil sis Rachel (aka Rackel). She has an affinity for looking adorable at all times, always finishing her food at IHOP even though I never can, making really really fricken cool art, diving into deep conversational topics, jamming to awesome music, and being an all-around wonderful human being.
The other day, Rachel and I decided to go on an adventure. Our intention was, after filling up on a delicious IHOP breakfast, to head to Kilgore Falls. A wonderful Harford County treasure, Kilgore Falls is an area frequented for its beautiful waterfalls (obviously) and swimming area.
Its major downfall is the lack of parking. Once the parking lot is full, a park ranger directs you to a turn around spot, leaving you to make other plans or try again later.
That is what happened to Rachel and I. Slightly discouraged, but still seeking adventure, we decided to head to a trail near Rachel’s house that ran along a river with some potential swim spots.
We were walking along the trail, admiring baby mushrooms, listening to music, and talking about being communication majors (I am happy to welcome Rach to that fam even if she’s at the Mount) when we stumbled upon this little gem.
In the middle of the river, sat this rock tower. Not satisfied with the pictures we were getting from the bank, I decided to defy Bear Grylls’ first rule of survival and get my shoes and socks wet. Wading through the river, I crouched down to capture the beauty of the structure that I can only seem to describe as complex simplicity.
At first glance, they’re just rocks. And that’s true. They are just rocks. That is what’s simple about it. But so many things have to work together in order for them to stay standing like that.
I showed my mom the picture when I got home, and she was reminded of readings from the book of Joshua. In chapters 3-4, Joshua is working to follow the orders of the Lord and deliver the Israelites across the Jordan.
God instructed Joshua to tell the priests carrying the arc of the covenant to stand in the Jordan, which promptly halted at their entrance due to the power of the Lord. The Israelites were able to cross the Jordan on dry land to safety (Joshua 3:17).
Usually, flowing water is a good sign, especially during times of harvest like in these chapters of Joshua. But in this case, a flowing river would have caused great danger to the crossing Israelites.
Then the Lord said to Joshua: Today I will begin to exalt you in the sight of all Israel, that they may know that, as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. (Joshua 3:7)
But God knew what they needed, and through His hands they were able to continue on their journey.
When there seems to be a halt in our flow of life, rather than viewing the stones in our path as an inconvenience, we can step back and appreciate our surroundings. These stopping points allow us to look back at where we’ve come from, and continue on stronger and more prepared for where we’re going.
Though the breaks may be treacherous rather than tranquil like the halting of the Jordan, they are designed by the ultimate Creator to bring us strength, perspective, and force us to put our trust in Him like the Israelites did time and time again.
Following their crossing, Joshua sets up twelve stones taken from the Jordan at their Gilgal camp. Joshua tells his followers that these stones are to remind them of the wonders the Lord worked for them that day. They are to show their children the tower of stones and tell them of how they crossed the mighty Jordan on dry ground.
For the Lord, your God, dried up the waters of the Jordan in front of you until you crossed over, just as the Lord, your God, had done at the Red Sea, drying it up in front of us until we crossed over, in order that all the peoples of the earth may know that the hand of the Lord is mighty, and that you may fear the Lord, your God, forever. (Joshua 4:23-24)
God’s path for each of us is beautiful my friends. Sometimes you just need to pause to stumble upon the treasures He plants.
Keep on shining,