Two decades ago, wildfires ravaged Yellowstone National Park. Flames charred more than a third of the park, people wondered if it would ever recover.
This summer, I walked trails where the trunks of charred trees now stand sentinel over new meadows, wildflowers flourishing where forest shade would have prevented them before,
watched a mother elk graze on tender spring grass, her twin calves sleeping in the sun,
and captured the reflection of the sky in water held still by fallen trees.
To be sure, the sun-bleached trunks of dead trees still stood in stark reminder of the destruction. But the wildflowers, new growth, twin calves nestled in a meadow were all notes in a sweeter symphony of redemption and renewal.
It feels like wildfire season here, a time of transition and challenges. I am struggling with an unfamilar hollowness in corporate worship, an uneasiness with a community that has always anchored me. But this song in the forest, echoing off canyons, rustling through grass? It resonated through the doubt, reminded me that the ashes from one dream are the fuel that feeds the next.
Spoke, “I am here, even now.”