|Photo by Carl Wycoff|
My wife gave me one of the best gifts I could have received at Christmas: a weekend out camping and climbing with my friend Kyle. Though we had to battle a few popup thunderstorms, we got an unusually warm weekend for this time in March. As I drove to meet Kyle, I rolled down the windows and felt a slight chill with the coolness of the breeze and a warmth from the sun that swelled in my chest like a good wine going down.
As Kyle and I entered Tennessee, the hills were littered with poplars, bursting with brilliant greens and the purples of redbuds -- as if they had been brushed onto the canvas of the mountains. The world was coming alive with spring as my heart was coming alive to beauty. Driving down the highway I realized how my mind needs space to wander, space to find God and find beauty in the common graces, in the intricate mysteries of his world.
Kyle and I enjoyed some climbing and some hiking, but the real joy of the weekend came around flank steak sizzling on the camp stove and the conversations by the fire, looking up through the trees at the stars.
Our short trip couldn't have ended on a better note as we ate delicious food at The Terminal in Chattanooga. As I perused the menu, I just had to laugh as I came to the philosopher's burger description:
Ground lamb seasoned with cinnamon, oregano, shallots and sea salt served with feta aioli and candied red onions. “After one taste of this burger everyone becomes a poet”You couldn't make a burger that sounded better to me than that. The meal was delicious, but more than that it was just a reminder of God calling me to be myself, praise him for simple graces, and to open my heart to be fully alive.