Hi, this is Pastor Ken, I want to welcome you to my Thoughts on a Thursday Podcast where I take some regular occurrence or personal story from my life and connect it to scriptural truth. So here are my thoughts on this Thursday, June 8th, 2023…Lover’s Leap

Each summer my wife and I vacation in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Southwestern Virginia. There is simply no other place on the planet that captivates us like those particular hills. One of our favorite activities when we are there is to climb onto my motorcycle and ride. There are oh so many places to ride in those hills, and to say that the views are great would be a gross understatement. There are places you can ride there that offer vistas that normally require an airplane to appreciate, but on some of those winding roads, they simply POP out of nowhere as you exit wooded spaces and round some random curve.

There is one ride we have not taken in a few years that I hope to enjoy later this summer. It begins on a winding two-lane road headed east out of the small town of Floyd. Route 8 climbs through gentle curves and farmland until it reaches its peak elevation as it crosses under the famed Blue Ridge Parkway. As the road descends, the views disappear as it makes its way down through the wooded landscape. There the road has a special benefit. The curves and switchbacks become so steep and sharp that you can nearly check to see if your own tail lights are working. That road finally intersects with Route 58 which climbs to the top of a mountain where some of the longest-range views in the area can be seen. The place at the top is known as Lover’s leap, and the side of the mountain drops off hundreds of feet but reveals a 40 or 50-mile view. There is a narrow shoulder alongside the road there where people impulsively stop to take some amazing photographs.

While we are there we will stare in silence for a while, as does everyone who sees it, especially for the first time. The view is mostly of wooded mountainsides, and distant ridges rising and falling along the horizon. Along some of the closer hillsides, farms, and fields dot the landscape, and one can’t help but try to see activity even if from such a distance. The hillsides in the foreground are green with trees but each ridge becomes a lighter shade of blue the farther away you look. It is the amazing, breathtaking, yet quintessential Blue Ridge Mountain view.

While my wife and I Stand taking in the astounding sight, there will be several passages from God’s word that will undoubtedly flood my thoughts. Allow me to share some of them with you now.

I’ll begin with the obvious one. Genesis 1:1 says, In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. When I look at those beautiful mountain ranges I often think of the fact that it was God who placed them there, and the fact that they have been standing right where they are now since the day that God formed them with a word. That brings to my mind Hebrews 11:3, By faith, we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible. Man’s science no longer allows for this truth to go unchallenged. Those who don’t want to recognize God as supreme try to tell us that a large explosion (though they never say what caused the explosion) was the catalyst of all that we can see, hear, smell, touch and taste. Those fools…I mean scientists want us to believe that the world existed millions of years before those gorgeous blue ridges ever came to rise up from flat terrain because of shifts in the tectonic plates under the earth’s crust. Ridiculous! I may not be a rocket scientist or a brain surgeon, but I know nothing comes to be without being energized by some pre-existing source of power. Psalm 90:2 tells me what the creative power was. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God. Jeremiah 32:17 exclaims, Ah Lord God! It is you who have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm! Nothing is too hard for you.

Additionally, as I survey the expanse of the overlook at lover’s leap I will consider that it was all created by a word, and I will be unable to avoid considering just who it was that spoke such an incredible word. John 1:1-2 says that In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him was not anything made that was made. Psalm 33:6 says, By the word of the Lord the heavens were made, and by the breath of His mouth all their host. Furthermore, Colossians 1:16 proclaims For by Him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible…all things were created through Him and for Him.

As I allow my eyes to scan the first through the valleys below and then upward to the far reaching ridges of blue mountain tops beyond, my thoughts will go to the words penned by the Apostle Paul in 1 Corinthians 8:6Yet for us there is only one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist. Eventually, my thoughts will settle on two scriptures from the book of Revelation. First, Revelation 4:11 says “Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created”. And second, Revelation 22:13 where Jesus the one who created everything including that incredible view, says of Himself, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last”.

Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Creator of Heaven and Earth is according to His own unfallable word…Love. Therefore, Love created the heavens and the earth. Love created the mountains and the valleys, love created it all. So as I get to, Lord willing, stand on that particular mountain top later this year and look out over those particular ridgelines painted in various shades of blue…I will acknowledge…it truly is Lover’s leap.

So now, …standing in awe of all of the marvelous creations of God and His handiwork, be thankful and give Him praise for all He has lovingly done, and…Go be Awesome!