My family and I have been in the Rocky Mountains for the past two weeks. (If you have never been to the Rocky Mountains, I suggest you do everything in your power to visit as soon as possible.) In the Rockies, God’s handiwork, majesty, and beauty are on full display. Whether it’s in the shimmering aspen trees, the tundra at 12,000 feet, the towering snow-capped peaks, or the vast array of wildlife (like the giant elk stag that strolled past our car this morning), God’s creation shouts His glory.

But when I leave this alpine paradise, I’ll be heading back to a land of 100+ degree temperatures, concrete, and computer screens. As the Rockies disappear from my rear view mirror, so will the daily reminder (waiting just outside my front door) of His breathtaking beauty and intricate design. When LBJ replaces Long’s Peak, will I still be as prone to sing His praises and marvel at His creation?

When my sight no longer astounds me, will my faith kick in?

Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” The reality is this: I hope for a God who is more majestic than even the Rocky Mountains themselves, more tender than the doe who guides her fawns gently through the forest nearby, more powerful than the pounding rush of the waterfall that capped off yesterday’s hike. I hope for all these things because I was made for these things. I have a yearning for God that not even His creation can fulfill. Only He Himself can satisfy it.

For as majestic as the Rocky Mountains are, they are only a hint of the awesome power and wonder of the One who created them. When I gaze up through the trees at night, the dizzying array of starlight is but a fragment of His creative genius. What I see doesn’t define God; it only reflects Him.

This is why faith is such a crucial part of our journey. So much so that Hebrews 11:6 says that it is impossible to please God without it. When I measure God only by what I see or experience, I may be tempted to misunderstand or misjudge Him. But when I walk by faith in His word and who He has already revealed Himself to be in my life, I can walk faithfully even when the mountaintops become valleys and the cool breezes are replaced by scorching heat.

Does God have you on a peak right now (literally or figuratively), or does He have you on a plain or even a pit? Remember that you are still surrounded by a different kind of awesomeness — not of purple mountains’ majesty but of Someone much more majestic. Don’t let unfavorable circumstances fool you into thinking that favorable circumstances are all you really need. Instead, rejoice in the fact that you have a God who exists beyond your circumstances — higher than the Rockies, stronger than the most powerful waterfall, and more dazzling than the starriest night.

So when my vacation gets replaced by my vocation, and my daily hike yields to my daily grind, I pray that I will not lose the sense of wonder for the One who made it all happen in the first place. I pray that I will use it as a springboard and a reminder of the one whose vicinity and proximity are not defined by my location. God is the God of creation universally, but He’s also the God of me (and you) personally … and we are loved, known, and cared for by the One who created it all.

So no matter where we find ourselves, if you and I can walk by faith, even when sight says otherwise, we’ll find a place of wonder and majesty not even the Rocky Mountains can match.

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