>Picture Truth #1 Nature and Inner Peace by Gary Fultz


Boundary Waters canoe Area Wilderness Waterfall

I admit it; I wanted to stop, build a cabin and stay here forever. A sense of inner peace flooded my very soul. In the spirit of that moment I forgot about everything practical. I could have shucked all commitments, responsibilities, job, the coming winter, and a small detail that I was in the middle of guiding a group of teenagers on a 60 mile wilderness trip by canoe. I entertained the thought “I could live here!”

Boundary Water Walleye

    The fishing was great in all the surrounding lakes, A deer had just stepped out of the trail to let me by as I carried a canoe and pack to the next lake, and what a view. Ahhhhhh, water , food, scenery, and away from lifes headaches!
    This scene in the small valley would be totally hidden but for the ominous sound that could be felt as much as heard. The trees crowd together by the mighty little stream. White cedars bend themselves over the water to get as much sunlight as possible. Boulders, smaller rocks, and downed trees froth the tumbling water as irresistible and immovable create their own niche in natures synergy; a microcosm of life everywhere. I relate most to the driftwood in some ways.
    It’s a place of life and death. This life giving water is not a quiet stream after it rains. A few days before we arrived it had rained seven inches in one night. Rivers and quiet streams hadturned vicious! We had already witnessed the the power of this water as a man and two sons tipped their canoe trying to cross a raging river. A strong teenager (a future Army Ranger) and I shot the rapids to rescue the dad as he was clinging to a sinking backpack. I can still hear him calling to his sons “tell your mother I love her” as he neared the edge of  a series of cascading waterfalls. The emotional cries to dad from the young men hanging on to small bent trees in the foamy water will never leave me.
    I felt the essence of nature, in this particular spot, calling me (although my wife would say I have hundreds of those spots). In this place I felt danger, adventure, beauty, peace, and unexplained emotion. What a place to contemplate the purposes of life, the essence of purpose, or whittle on a stick!
    I already know (Iam constantly reminded) that creation in nature does not care about you; only the creator does. I’m not sure why we feel close enough to God by hanging in and around His artwork. Nature does not help you when you are caught in the current and the canoe tips. If a sudden storm catches you in big water the white caps do not wait until you get to shore safely. The concept of “Mother Nature” is false; there is nothing personal there.

Mystical morning in Boundary Waters
    I love the adventure, beauty, the challenges of the wilderness,and all the stories that come from being there. I love the feelings that come from my “waterfall” places. But, it’s easy to be deceived by the illusion that nature can satisfy the craving for inner peace, much less impart us with any lasting peace beyond the moment.
    I visited this place again with another group of Boundary Waters Wilderness seekers. I stood in the same spot with the same emotions and more as I said to my Creator “Jesus, You really made a great spot here, thank you for letting me see and feel all this!” Nature didn’t care, but God was there with me as we were immersed in the majesy of the moment.
Loons enjoying the calm waters
 Gary D


Published by Gary Fultz

Outdoors Man, Hunter, Fisherman, Guide, Writer / Author, Photographer, Public Speaker, Musician, Song Writer, Story Teller, Follower Of Jesus. Love God and family and total strangers

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