Today baby blue sky melds with steel blue water on a hazy horizon. Sometimes the lake looks angry with a gray canopy suspended low over crashing whitecaps. But today a cluster of cotton-ball clouds slowly crosses the seemingly endless expanse of Lake Superior. Gentle waves tumble water-worn stones over sandy shoreline with rhythmic precision. I sit and listen to the soothing sound of rocks rolling like a gentle rain. The scent of fish-infused water mingles with the earthy smell of sun-soaked sand. Seagulls scream as they drift past and sandpipers scamper along water’s edge, darting in and out to the beat of the waves.
I kick off my shoes, grab my ice cream pail, and begin ambling along water’s edge. A calm settles over me as life’s cares gradually acquiesce to the soothing sights, sounds, and smells. The stones underfoot are a showcase of natural color. Haphazard piles of flat black slate, brick red and ivory sandstone, caramel-colored jasper, hematite-banded red jasper, speckled granites, colorful gneiss, and glittering quartz clutter the beach as far as the eye can see. Sometimes a splash of rich red, rusty orange, or gentle yellow caches my eye. These colors often betray an agate hiding in the rubble. I pick up anything that catches my eye and inspect it carefully before adding it to my pail or returning it to its natural habitat.
Most of the little treasures I take home are nothing more than very pretty lake stones. I put those in a five-gallon pail. Someday we hope to put a fireplace in our house. When we do, I’d like to make the hearth from my Lake Superior finds. A few of my treasures, however, are agates. Those go in my half-gallon jar in the log cabin. From time to time, I take them out, put them in water and just look at them. The unique shapes, and colors, and patterns fascinate me.
As I marvel over my finds, grinning ear to ear like a little kid, I wonder what God is thinking as He watches over me. I know how much I enjoy finding them, sorting through them, and taking them out to admire from time to time. Does God get a kick out of seeing me enthralled by His handiwork? When I pick rocks, am I engaging in silent worship? I’m not sure. I’m still trying to wrap my mind around all that worship is.
This I do know: “Great is the Lord and highly to be praised, and His greatness is unsearchable. One generation shall praise Your works to another, and shall declare Your mighty acts. On the glorious splendor of Your majesty and on Your wonderful works, I will meditate. Men shall speak of Your awesome acts, and I will tell of Your greatness.” (Psalm 145:3-6)