Wednesday night as Terry and I were out for an evening walk, the brightest shooting star I have ever seen came crashing across the sky, looking so close to the earth that I almost felt like I could reach up and touch it! What a wonder to behold! I will treasure the memory of it.
Last weekend we had a little overnight getaway just outside Yellowstone National Park. A friend suggested we drive the scenic byway through Shoshone National Forest on our way home. Oh, wow! At every turn, something spectacular appeared. Rushing streams, lovely lakes, dramatic mountains, breathtaking views delighted us.
I once had a friend who said of the Grand Canyon, “I don’t know what the big deal is. It is just a big hole in the ground.” Is that not astounding? How does one live lacking the attitude that nature is full of marvelous features to appreciate? Such beauty should break us open to deeper places within ourselves.
How fortunate I am to have had a mother who paid attention to the exquisite splendor of the night sky and who was forever fascinated by mountains. My husband, too, is attentive to nature. He once woke me up at 3 a.m. to see a most gorgeous full moon spilling its light over the Smoky Mountains. When we would take walks on our farm, he would often point out a hawk or other bird taking flight, an animal he could make out in the distance, a particular bird song he heard or flowers he found especially pretty.
When my daughter was four, from out on the patio she called, “Mommy! Mommy! Come see!” Startled, I thought something was wrong. I rushed out to find her enthralled with the flowers I had planted. I know very little about plants of any kind but had made the attempt at a small flowerbed with sunflowers and zinnias. Amazingly they flourished. What a small act on my part for the huge reward of my daughter’s pleasure. She has had a love for sunflowers ever since.
When Terry and I had a home on the lake, sometimes the three of us would sleep on the dock, lulled by the lapping of the water and the motion of the dock. Even as I write this, I can sense the peace and pleasure of those nights.
There is much to savor. Let us tune up our attention, open our eyes, open our hearts to wonderment.
May we be bearers of hope, the “wait staff” of Hope’s Café for each other and all those we encounter. Shalom, Kate
Hope’s Café Bonus: “The wonder of the world, the beauty and the power, the shapes of things, the color, lights and shade. These I saw. Look ye also while life lasts.”—-from an old gravestone in Cumberland, England.