One of my favorite authors is Donald Miller. He has written a number of books that have challenged me spiritually as well as just being enjoyable to read. My favorite book of his is called Through Painted Deserts. Honestly, it might be one of my favorite books of all time. It really is a great story about his journey from Texas to Oregon. It is a story about his journey across the country looking for answers to questions that weren’t asked. For some reason I can especially relate to this book but I also think it is about a journey we are all on. I recommend all Donald’s books, especially this one.

I have re-read it the past week and some different things caught me as unique and profound. I have pulled a couple quotes from the book that mean a lot to me where I am at right now. There is some background information that is pertinent to understand while I like this so much.

Donald and his friend Paul have traveled from Texas all the way to the Grand Canyon. They have spent a few days there and are now hiking to the river and back. They are not very well prepared to do such strenuous hiking and are struggling each day. The morning of the third day as they prepare to leave camp to head back to the rim, they are talking about one meal they would enjoy. They decide that a big bowl of Raisin Bran with some cold milk would be just about the best thing ever. The following quote from the book is just perfect!!

“You know, Paul begins, its funny. Two weeks ago when we talked about things we wanted or our aspirations, we would have talked about houses or boats or cars. Now that we’ve been on the road for a while, everything is reduced to a bowl of cereal. Paul develops a smile as he stands straight again. Isn’t that just beautiful? Cereal. There are people in this world who are killing themselves because they want more and more of nothing. And the only thing you and I want in this world is a bowl of cereal. That just shows you how the things we think are important really aren’t important.”

Having been to the Grand Canyon several times, I can relate to the difficulty of the terrain and challenge it would be for inexperienced hikers. Similarly, I spend a lot of time in the wilderness and often thoughts cross over to food. While I am a good cook and eat exceptionally well on the trail, there is nothing quite like a delicious home cooked meal or something as simple as a big bowl of cereal.

This quote from the book just hit me in a weird way as I read it this time through. Just the simplicity of wanting nothing more than cereal. Life can get cluttered with all sorts of things that don’t matter. I stress and worry about things that really truly do not matter in the least. I have been in that situation in the wilderness where I want nothing more than something delicious to eat. It is mind boggling that one day I could be worrying about classes and jobs and what am I going to do after college and a number of other things, and the next I just want some food. It is really a beautiful thing. I don’t think I should say that the things I stress about don’t really matter. But then again maybe they really don’t. Maybe life is about just wanting a bowl of cereal. Maybe its about looking at the way trees grow and the stars shine and eating cereal. Sometimes, actually a lot of times, I think we make life way more complicated than it needs to be. Maybe it really is all about stopping to smell the roses.

I have really come to the realization that there are some things that just don’t matter. I encourage you to take a moments and just be. I will say it again, just be. Don’t do anything, worry about anything, or even think about things. Trust me it is a lot harder than you think to just sit and be. Maybe you won’t get anything out of it or maybe this is just me rambling at 5am. Either way I hope you find peace and can just sit in the glory of God and be content with life as it is.

I leave you with another quote from Through Painted Deserts. Possibly later this weekend I will write my thoughts on it but for now you can just ponder it. Have a wonderful Easter everyone!! 🙂

There is nothing I am missing. I have everything I was supposed to have to experience the magnitude of this story, to dance with God.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Donna Lohr
    Apr 06, 2012 @ 07:29:01

    I have had moments of complete contentment, but they are hard to hold on to, aren’t they? Life keeps pushing in and saying, “Yeah, but….”
    Dancing with God – there’s something to think about….
    Have a great weekend as we celebrate the dawn of the age of grace once again.


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