Playdates with God: Wonder Land

I walk down River Trail—hugged by trees and moss-covered hills. There is not another soul in sight and the information I have says this goes on for five miles. I will have to walk through the river a little bit and there are some steep parts and I am giddy with anticipation. This is what I came for—this time alone to walk with God—and I ask Him to please watch out for bears.
I don’t get far though—maybe a mile—when I see a spot of sun shining through a copse of trees. Those naked leaves—their beauty bared by the shed of chlorophyll—shine like colored glass winking in the light. I leave the trail, cut down the mossy bank and over sleeping trees—crunching through the deep of fallen leaves and brambles until I stand in that little knoll of sunlight. The trees are shifting in the wind—leaves rustling like petticoats and I lift my eyes to watch them sway against the blue.
I think how I would like to catch a picture of a leaf falling—pluck that beauty from the sky with my camera and carry it home. I lie down on my back and poise the camera just so. I try and try. But I can’t get the shutter speed fast enough or my finger won’t press the button in time and I never can seem to catch grace falling down.
Just be still.
I hear the Voice and remember. I do not come alone.
I lower the camera to my side.
And that’s when the wind begins sweeping up the sky and the sudden shifting in the breeze lets down a cascade of gems and they float down soft all around me. I am laughing out loud as I reach out my hands and try to catch these leafy stars and I stay right there for the longest time.
Because all the world’s a wonderland.

How do you embrace the God-joy? Every Monday I’ll be sharing one of my Playdates with God. I would love to hear about yours. It can be anything: outside, quiet time. Maybe it’s solitary. Maybe it’s loud and crowded. Just find Him. Be with Him. Grab my button at the bottom of the page and join us:

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  1. says

    I love that you left the trail and chased after the sunlight. And I’m so glad that you listened to the voice. And didn’t get eaten by bears 🙂

  2. Jen Ferguson says

    Oh, this is so beautiful. I can imagine you lying on the ground, giggling with God, leaves cascading. He is such a lover of our souls.

  3. ro elliott says

    This makes me think of the hymn…this is my father’s world…He does speak to us everywhere. lovely…blessings to you~

  4. says

    I love how you wrote this – felt like I was on the trail with you. I have many moments when I feel like God tells me to put the camera down and view things with my own eyes, not through a lens. Lovely reminder.

  5. Christina says

    Beautiful! Made me want to run and play in a pile of leaves. It’s amazing what we can see when we are still. Blessings!

  6. Rachel @myheartsmission says

    This is so beautiful. I love those times when joy bubbles over in the simple startling beauty and wonder of our God and all that He created. Praying for more and more until all life’s moments are saturated with it. Blessings.

  7. messymarriage says

    I felt like I was right there with you, Laura. You have a gift for weaving words and waiting on the right moment to capture God’s beautiful creation. Thanks so much for taking us along on that miraculous jaunt, my friend!

  8. says

    First I thought how courageous trekking five miles alone. Then “please watch out for bears.” How I’d love to see a bear in the wild–but not alone and not a hungry one.

    This is stunning, Laura. Leaves rustling their petticoats, and just be still, and all the world’s a wonderland. Breathing deep of this.

  9. Elizabeth says

    I am right there with you in this beautiful place under the canopy, on the trail, seeing as under a microscope all the detail of this forest….it reminds me of Pooh and the Hundred Acre Woods and the hefalumps.. the childhood magic of the woods. You describe it well, Laura.

  10. kingfisher says

    How blessed you must have felt inside, when the wafting leaves came gently down, all around. And to think that you had to “lower” yourself to the ground and just give way, give up, give in, indulge — in order to experience the bliss. Thanking God that you have within you the means to see His glory everywhere. May you always have river trails to walk, not only the literal outdoors, but in the flora and fauna of imagination, mercy, and a rested heart.

  11. Alicia Bruxvoort says

    Ahh.. autumn- it’s a non-stop exercise in soaking up glory. The kind that can only be captured best in soul-snapshots. love how you let Him woo you, friend. Blessings on your week.

  12. Amy Anderson says

    Smiling. What a beautiful time~and beautiful photos you share here. I’m picturing it all, and I’m inspired, wondering why I don’t ask God to watch out for wildlife for me?! I let fear go on walks with me too often. Goodness, even a porcupine freaked me out once. As always, you inspired me. Thanks:)

  13. says

    Oh, Pooh! It’s been so long since I have visited the Hundred Acre Wood, but we used to spend so much time there when my boys were small. It’s a great place for the imagination to be stoked. Thank you, Elizabeth.
    Sent from my iPad

  14. says

    One time when my husband and I were biking on the Greenbrier Trail we came upon a young bear heading down to the river. The poor guy was so startled that he turned tail and ran. Maybe he wasn’t very hungry 🙂
    Sent from my iPad

  15. says

    So many times I miss the most important parts because I try to capture them through the lens. It’s good to sit with beauty, isn’t it? Because God sits with us.
    Sent from my iPad

  16. says

    Thank you for your kind words, my friend. Do you know that I pray for you each day? Whenever I give Lucy Mae a little snack from the turkey log that Ebony sent, I am prompted to pray for you. Such a privilege and a blessing to do so.

  17. says

    I know, isn’t this fun? I am doing well, thank you. The days are busy as I am still in a season of more hours at the hospital, but this, too, is a blessing. How are you doing, Dolly?

  18. soulstops says

    Glad to hear you are well…we’re well overall…God provided wisdom re: some decisions, and I am relieved…Enjoying the start of women’s small groups…Praying God continues to bless you full with wonder and joy, Laura 🙂

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