After a fun-in-the-sun filled week in one of the most beautiful places on earth, I and the family are back from Madeira beach on the magnificent Gulf Coast of Florida. Back from paradise and back to the reality of my everyday life. The sand was white, the sunsets were brilliant, the water was blue and the weather was warm. The colors of the water and sky seemed to merge, at times, so that discerning one from the other was nearly impossible. But, paradise isn’t something that can be harnessed or held captive and there wasn’t a way to stay any longer this time. Once back home, it didn’t take long for true reality to show it’s face. I had to do two things last night that I haven’t had to do in a week… first, I had to run from a spider and second, had to turn on the heated mattress pad. As I sit here this evening looking out the window toward the road, I find it hard to be completely happy that I am not looking out upon the ocean, feeling the humid air caress my skin and knowing that, in a short while, a new light show will manifest as the sun sets behind the Gulf and the sky turns a dozen shades of red, orange and yellow. There are tractors in my vision as opposed to sail boats and fishing trawlers, tobacco as opposed to palm trees and dirt as opposed to sand. While I dearly long for the sea, I cannot discount the beauty of the mountains and their likeness to the coast I left behind. The mountains and hills, much like the sea, continuously roll and change, making the scene a little different each time I look at it. Depending on the season, the trees display their beauty in the form of waving leaves, ripening fruit or their stalwart nakedness. The fields will turn from green to brown, then will die away until spring. The coast, however, will in some way, remain the same from season to season even though it changes from second to second. While that sameness could get old for some, I find the beauty of a timeless place that changes with every roll of a wave, though it often goes unnoticed, to be a source of inspiration. No matter how much the same something seems to be, underneath the sameness is a greatness whose workings are only known by God. I’ve been to the sea, I’ve seen the desert and I live in the mountains… each one, though vastly different, is the same in that they call to my heart in a way that I never really expected. I don’t want to stay in one place. I can feel the wanderlust growing inside me and there will come a time, Lord willing, when I will get in my car with a few changes of clothes, my camera, laptop, phone and tripod and hit the road. Where that road will lead me remains to be a mystery, one that I look forward to unraveling. I find that waiting for that moment in time to become the present is likely the hardest thing I have ever done. I don’t want to wait, but now is not the time. When it is time, I will know and until then, the urge to go will grow and mature inside me so that when I go, I will know what to do when I get there. I have faith in an awesome God who answers the prayers of His people. He knows the deepest desires of my heart and the dreams of my spirit and I have no doubt that He will show me the things that I so long to see. Until then, I will put the ocean away and embrace the beauty of the mountains with the foggy mornings and cool evenings… and I will wait. Photography will take me where I want to go, I’ve no hesitations about believing that, and God will bless my photography so that it will glorify His greatness. Yes, I will wait and while I do, I will continue to serve, worship and revere Him for all the things He has already shown me and thank Him for what is to come.
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