“Why did I even bother with the hassle of their stroller?!?” That was the very thought running through my head as my toddler took off down the trail ahead of me. If I knew he was going to be so thrilled to take the trails by foot, I would have grabbed my backpack and happily left the stroller at home.
My next thought as I observed him running ahead, “Oh dear, and I would have definitely dressed him in more appropriate footwear!” But you know, as a Mom I live and learn each day. Who knew my mini energetic farmer would also share my love of hiking so much? I will happily take him along! Just seeing the sheer joy of exploring the trail from his point of view is worth any of the extra gear I have to carry.
Today was is National Trails Day, and we are so blessed to have some great places to hike around us. It seems these days that we are all too ready to jump on board to protect the “last best places” that we really don’t even know much about personally. Yes, they are gorgeous and seemingly wild; there is no doubt about it. But maybe we should be taking time on this day (and many other days) to remember and honor, with some of that toddler-like joy and excitement, the Creator of these beautiful places.
“‘For My hand made all these things, Thus all these things came into being,’ declared the Lord. ‘But to this one I will look, to him who is humble and contrite of spirit, and who trembles at My word.'” Isaiah 66:2
And while we are on our way to those beautiful trails, let us not ignore the landscape surrounding us there either. Where I’m from, it is beautiful farmland…also wild and untamed in its own unique way. The best part is that each type of landscape we see has been created with an individual purpose and to meet many needs.
So, I’d encourage you to find a trail, blaze your own, or even take an observant stroll down the nearest gravel road today, or even this month sometime (it’s National Great Outdoors Month) and take thoughtful note of your surroundings. Alternatively, take a toddler with you for a different experience, or just excitedly run off like a toddler down a new path! Either way, have fun and take in some fresh air!
“In whose hand are the depths of the earth, the peaks of the mountains are His also. The sea is His, for it was He who made it, and His hands formed the dry land.” Psalm 95:4-5