My Favorite Place On Earth

img_6064The beach is my favorite place in the world.  Not a tropical, warm beach, but the cold, damp, salty Oregon Beach.  Where the morning mist soaks, freezing water numbs and the weather changes faster than, than, well it just changes fast.  It’s a beautiful place full of charm, grit and beauty.  I could live there, truly.

I’ve asked myself many times why I love the beach so much and I think I’ve found the answer:  God seems to show up there for me.  I know He’s everywhere, whether I’m at the beach or not, but I notice Him there more.  With every crashing wave, every seagull chirp, every footprint in the sand, every whiff of ocean air, every seashell found, I’m reminded of God’s power, creativeness and attention to detail.

Folks always seem to be nice and relaxed there also.  It’s a great place to people watch.  Dogs are roaming the wide open space, families are creating memories and kids are getting sand everywhere….it’s beautiful.

I think we all need find a spot like this…somewhere to unwind and disconnect a bit.  The pace of our daily lives can be hard to maintain at times….endless shuffling and texting and calling and travelling and organizing and committing and helping and serving and…..stressing.  Taking time to refocus on what matter helps us be better people.  Period.

All of our “places” of rest are different.  For some it’s the mountains, while others prefer Disneyland or camping or a tropical island or a coffee shop or their own bedroom.  It doesn’t matter, just find it and hit the life-pause-button from time to time.  You’ll be glad you did.

What’s your favorite place to find solitude or rest?

God Bless,

Paul

 

 

 

Campfire

campfirebeachsmallMy family just got back from a much-needed beach trip.  It was rejuvenating to say the least.

We ate, we laughed, we walked, we strolled, we kicked sand, we created memories.

I’ve wanted to have a campfire on the beach for a long time.  There’s something nostalgic about fires, sticks and s’mores.  Maybe it’s the sound of the ocean.  Maybe it’s the smoke-marinated clothes.  Maybe it’s the common bond of sitting around an open flame, sometimes silently.  I think it’s a mix of all 3.  Actually for me, there’s another factor……my sons.

For some reason, building a campfire on the beach is something that I want my boys to remember.  I want them to remember the long walk from the hotel to the beach, toting the wood, skewers and other supplies.  I want them to remember finding the perfect spot to gather.  I want them to remember crumpling up the paper, carefully placing the kindling and clicking the lighter.  I want them to remember the anticipation of dad finally opening the bag of marshmallows.  I want them to remember my hand on theirs as we gently, tactically toast up that perfect, toasty ball of sugar.  Lastly, I want them to remember the love shared.

There’s so many more “campfire” moments that I hope to share with my sons.  I didn’t learn a lot of “manly stuff” growing up, but I’m figuring it out as I go.

The actual “stuff” that I teach them isn’t what’s most important.  Love should be the fuel behind every memory.  Them sensing that love is what’s most important.

Someday, I hope to see them creating loving memories with their own families.  Maybe they’ll have their own “campfire” moments.  As long as love motivates them, even the simplest of times will ignite memories for generations.

God Bless,

Paul