I went snowshoeing in the Uinta Mountains yesterday. Yes, you read that correctly. That's okay, I won't spite you your disbelief, because doing such a thing is completely out of character for me. But some people from church were going, and I remember going once a long time ago in the former life I refer to as Pre-Mission Existence. I have a vague recollection of enjoying it then so I decided to go.
I'm really grateful I did.
You see, I'm a wannabe outdoorsy person. I love spectacular breathtaking views, but I'm not always a fan of hiking to get to them. But with vistas such as these, I'm okay with it.
We had fresh snowfall on Friday night, so imagine the delight at having the sun come out amid the bluest sky I've ever seen. The snow was a perfect pristine powder and cushioned any spills I may have had quite nicely.
We hiked about a mile in from the trail head to this yurt. It is one of about a dozen or so found in the Utah's back country. The best part about it was the wood-burning stove that kept us warm when we weren't outside. We also had a potluck of hiking food, and one of our guides packed fixin's for dutch oven apple cobbler. It was perfect with a cup of hot cocoa.
After a short rest, a few of us headed back out to do some exploring. I know, even more out of character, right? But I was able to snap a few good shots.
Now, there were a few times when I wanted to (and once when I actually did) tell the group that I was going to head back, because my pesky joints were aching, and I really didn't believe that I could make it up any more hills. But they continually assured me that in just a few more yards, there were beautiful views, and that I could make it.
It must be the writer in me, but when I am surrounded by such grandeur, I can't help but wax philosphical or spiritual. When I did make it up to the hill, I realized that in a small way this is what my life is. 2008 was a year of thinking I couldn't make it up hills. I wasn't going to find a job, and I wasn't going to find a place to live. And just when I felt like not trying anymore, when it was too much to send out another resume, or call one more landlord's number, it was as though my Father in Heaven was standing at the top of the hill telling me, "I know that you don't want to, and I know that you can't see it from there, but if you want to come up just a little farther, there is an amazing view."
I'm really grateful I did. The best part of that hardship (and trust me, I'm super sore today) is that after testing my faith in making those really difficult decisions, life just doesn't seem too hard. I feel stronger and more able. Which, I think is really the point of it all.