I’m currently sitting in a quaint one bedroom cabin on the side of mountain looking out the window at another mountain in the distance. Tracy is on the porch, in a rocking chair, reading her bible, sipping on a cup of coffee, and journaling (surprise). It’s quiet here. I’ve always been struck at the deep sense of tranquility I feel when I’m up in the mountains.
We decided to celebrate our one-year anniversary by heading up to Asheville, North Carolina for a week of serenity and silence. Tracy took the reins of planning this vacation and did a great job finding a charming little cabin. It’s definitely an old-fashioned place. There is nothing modern at all in here, but I think it gives the place a lot of character. We have no internet, no cable, and (for the most part) our phones have been off.
I’m glad she picked Asheville. It’s different for us. Usually I’m the one that plans our vacations. I almost always decide on urban exploration. I’m definitely a city-slicker. I love the buzz and life of New York City, the historic and patriotic atmosphere of Washington D.C., and the great memories we always seem to make in Chicago. To me, there is nothing like walking downtown and discovering the unique characteristics that make a city great.
However, the lifestyle of city dwellers can be exhausting. There is always so much to see and such little time to see it all. Out here in the solitude of the mountains, Tracy and I have been able to just enjoy the company of each other without distractions.
We got here Sunday night and on Monday morning I woke up at around 9:30am (felt guilty about that), immediately jumped up, and started to plan the day. I started to research places for us to visit and things to do. As I was doing that, I looked out the window and was captivated by the view of the mountains in the distance. I realized at that moment that I needed to just stop, un-wind, and enjoy the fact that I don’t have to rush off and do a bunch of “stuff” while I’m here.
Tracy often teases me of my extreme eagerness to get the day started. Typically, as soon as I get up in the morning I’m out the door on a prayer walk and then to Starbucks to journal and read my bible. I never like to just sit around and do nothing. I get antsy. I’m the type of person that loves to get up and get going. Carpe Diem!
Being here, however, has really helped me to appreciate the power of stillness. Life gets so busy. We are always on the move and that can potentially hinder us from hearing God’s voice and having His presence nourish our dry and spastic souls.
I am leaving you with a gift – peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.
I am thankful to be celebrating our one year anniversary in the majestic mountains that God created. I encourage you to get away, go to the beach, hit up the trails, and enjoy nature, but remember that true peace comes from Jesus. It comes from Him taking your heavy burdens (Matt. 11:28) and you being clothed with His refreshing and empowering presence (Rom. 13:14).
Yesterday, I went on an amazing prayer walk up a mountain. The stillness out here really helps me to hear from God. We’ve only been here a day, but already feel so rejuvenated. It’s the perfect spot for us as we reflect on the goodness of God in our first year of marriage and dream about what the future holds for us.
I’m Harold Dorrell Briscoe. Thanks for reading.