I Blog For Books

20 January 2009

A Mountain Railway

Have you ever traveled west to the beautiful state of Colorado? In my late teens, I was fortunate enough to live there for 19 months. Born and raised southerner that I am, the majesty of the Rockies found a place in my heart right next to the peanut fields and white sand beaches. More than 20 years later, I can still see the eagles fly, hear the icy cold rush of a mountain stream, and smell the freshness of that crisp, clean air. (written 3 Oct 07)

For a seventeen-year-old whose only experience with the west was Oklahoma, Colorado was a magical wonderland. The scenery was phenomenal! It amazed me to be able to sit out on the back deck and see the mountains surrounding me. Standing on even low peaks gave us the ability to see for miles, to survey this new location we were calling home. We drove for miles those two summers! If we had a chance to get away, we took it. There were so many things to explore in that beautiful state!

When school began, we discovered we were not alone as transplants. Construction of the shale oil refinery just a few miles west had brought new residents from several southern states. We all traveled! For most of us, this was new territory! North Alabama has mountains, but nothing to compare to the grand stature of the Rocky Mountains.

If you are familiar at all with country music of the early seventies, there is a song (I believe of that era) about the Silverton-Durango railroad. As of 1983, it was still in operation, primarily as a tourist attraction. We didn't ride the train, but traveled the roads above. Those twisty-turny roads clung to the mountain, shoulders non-existent in places. When you looked down, you were looking WAY down. The Durango-Silverton railroad chugged along below, rails just as precariously placed. Switch music genres, and think of the song "Life is Like a Mountain Railway". I don't know who wrote it, nor do I know when it was released.

Life is like
a mountain railway,
with an engineer
that's brave.
We must make
the run successful,
from the cradle
to the grave.
Watch the turns,
the hills, the tunnels.
Never falter,
never fail.
Keep your hand
upon the throttle,
and your eye
upon the rail.

If we consider our lives to be "like a mountain railway," we must indeed keep our eye upon the rail. What, then, is the rail? The rail is the path we choose to take. Don't consider yourself a brave engineer? Why not? The railway that is our life is fraught with peril. The only way we can keep our hand upon the throttle and eye upon the rail, the turns, the hills, and the tunnels is to have God as our navigator. It is only through His grace and mercy that we will make it through this life.

Do you know how to define grace and mercy? Grace is defined as getting more than you deserve. Mercy is defined as not getting what you rightfully deserve. Isn't our God simply awesome??
God, may I continue to be blessed with your grace. Your mercy surrounds my soul. Let me never miss an opportunity to praise you!

"But mine eyes are unto thee, O GOD the Lord: in thee is my trust; leave not my soul destitute." ~Psalm 141:8 KJV

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