Have you ever wanted to climb to the top of a giant tree that reaches the sky? As a youngster, I spent many a day in my girlfriend’s yard. They had one gigantic fir tree with a homemade treehouse; well, okay, more like a platform. But to us, it was a chance to escape the unwanted advances of the silly fifth-grade boys by racing up the rope ladder and pulling it out of reach in the nick-of-time.
My friend’s father had topped the tree, which made a perfect seat for two girl explorers to scan their kingdom from 30 feet in the air. We loved surveying our childhood kingdom of rooftops, ant-sized children playing in nearby yards, a grade school a few blocks away, and our imagination-gone-wild fantasy games in the neighborhood gravel pit.
But most of all, our favorite was swaying together and building momentum until the tree rocked and creaked under our bottoms. It wasn’t super-supple, but the trunk would still get to swaying enough that we had to hang on to each other. And, yes, a few girly screams echoed through the air, although I doubted anyone knew where they came from.
As I look back on that adventure, I’m reminded of a favorite uncle and his family who visited my husband and I when we lived in Neah Bay, Washington. We hiked to the most northwesterly point of the contiguous United States, Cape Flattery, awestruck by the majesty of God’s creation. On the one and a half-mile round trip trek, we commented on the complexity of nature. From tiny lichen to towering Sitka Spruce, we stopped repeatedly to take in the magnificence of God’s handiwork. On the return trip, my uncle honored us using his baritone voice to sing the hymn, “How Great Thou Art”. Looking skyward, I noticed that even the trees joined our praise to the Almighty God, stretching their branches heavenward.
No matter what our vantage point, “… from through the forest glades I wander…,” or “… from lofty mountain grandeur…”, may we, like children, be awestruck with creation and give thanks and praise to the Creator.