We chatted all the way down the mountain, excited to find the waterfall. On the valley floor, we followed a very dry stream, listening for sounds of rushing water. Nothing.
The descent took us longer than we expected. The trail apps logged the hike at 2.8 miles. We’d already gone further than that trying to find the elusive water fall.
It started raining. I had work projects waiting for me. Jill needed to be home when her older son finished his school day. Jill’s 17-month-old son, Rockwell, rocked the hike strapped in a loose backpack to Jill’s back. He just watched us curiously as we talked. We decided to head back up the mountain towards home.
Navigation’s always been easy for me. I actively observe and I’m rarely lost on a path I’ve traveled—or at least not lost for long, I should say. But, I realized that in my intensifying concern/annoyance/frustration with not locating the waterfall, I hadn’t been really paying attention to where we’d been.
When we climbed back onto the path, we found ourselves at a crossroads. And I didn’t know which way to go.
We took the path that seemed the most logical. After following it for only a couple of minutes, the intense foliage opened into a lovely clearing with two massively tall trees flanked by guava trees that we didn’t recognize at all.
So we retraced our steps back to the crossroads and took the other path. In a matter of minutes, we walked back into the same clearing! Since we hadn’t seen any other trail options, we decided that maybe we didn’t notice the clearing on the way down the mountain,so we followed the trail across the clearing and into the dense foliage. We reached some really quirky trees similar to ones we’d talked about in another spot earlier and we knew we hadn’t passed that way before. So we walked back to the clearing.
My mind filled with the frequent news reports of people lost in O’ahu’s mountains. Our little hiker’s toesies began freezing in the rainy chill. I suddenly felt a surge of uneasiness, but not fear. The rain perpetuated the anxiousness while it washed away our tracks.
We’d followed the trails we’d seen! We hadn’t seen another option!
I turned to Jill and asked if we could pray together. On cue, little Rockwell folded his arms, too. We thanked God for the glorious mountain. We thanked God for friendship and adventure. We thanked God for guava and rain. We thanked God for His Holy Spirit that remembers all things and can be our Guide. We asked for His guidance.
We followed the path out of the clearing, back to the river. I joked that the Lord knew I needed a physical lesson on relying on His mighty arm. Too often I try to do everything by myself to not bother Him.
We reached the crossroads, turned left, and stopped—calculating. I felt myself spin around. There, behind us and immediately ascending, was a path. What? Was it there before? Neither of us saw it.
We climbed up into the brush. After a few moments, we confirmed the path and followed it back up the mountain, across the ridge and back to the car. Our 2.8 mile waterfall hike became a 5.75 mile water falling from the sky hike.
Jill prayed a beautiful thank you prayer. We felt really grateful! I felt the whole loopty-loop to the clearing was a miracle. Who knows how long we might have wandered the wrong way in either direction. We were so grateful for an immediate answer to prayer.
I appreciated the take away. As soon as we prayed for the Lord’s help, the path appeared. As soon as we prayed, anxiety and doubt faded away. As soon as we prayed, God revealed His mighty arm.
“Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name. He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him.”
I loved this passage from Psalms 91:14-15 because we really do love Him. And in answering our prayers, He literally took us from the valley floor and set us high on the mountain ridge.
In big things or small things, the Lord will bless our lives with His mighty arm!
“Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.”
I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I have moved 64 times and have not tired of experiencing this beautiful earth! I love the people, languages, histories/anthropologies, & especially religious cultures of the world. My life long passion is the study & searching out of religious symbolism, specifically related to ancient & modern temples. My husband Anthony and I love our bulldog Stig, adventures, traveling, movies, motorcycling, and time with friends and family.