If you ever visit the Grand Canyon, consider the North Rim as a more beautiful and secluded alternative to the overly touristy South Rim. I feel so much happier when I am in wooded forests. I feel like I can appreciate G-d and hear him better in the wilderness. This is definitely how I felt on the North Rim, as I sat on a rocky out cropping more than 100 feet high beside the North Kaibab Trail. There are few hikers late in the day, and the valley below me is covered in dense firs. It looks like a northern California forest, rather than the Arizona desert of the South Rim.
The L-rd has been speaking to me through the Psalms for a while now. I was reading about kind David, watching his tongue around his enemies. I began to think about watching my own tongue, and how I had failed to watch myself when I was fussing at my drunken friend about the semantics behind her concept of spirituality. In spite of my complete lack of compassion and love in that instant, G-d still touched my friend, and she spoke honestly for the first time about her beliefs.
As I sat on a rock reflecting on this, I felt like the L-rd was telling me that his good works were not at all dependant upon my good works. I have no control over him or power to stop his good works through my own bad deeds. He is to far above me for that.
As if to further manifest his Love for me in spite of my failures, as I drove out of the park that evening, I passed massive herds of mule deer, grazing in the grassy meadows, bounded by firs and yellow leafed aspens. I even had the honor of seeing a doe nursing twin fawns.
I camped in a beautiful clearing that night, surrounded by open forest. My tiny campfire crackled with the mixture of cool burning fir, and hot burning, popping aspen branches. I sat their and smoked my own hand rolled version of a cigar (pipe tobacco and rolling papers), enjoying the solitude of the forest before I finally crawled into my truck for a very cold night’s sleep.