Photos by: Justin Dobson
Not long ago, I had one of those inter-personal days, the one where you try to understand how you got to where you are at that exact moment. As I sat and pondered this, I realized all the things that have happened over the course of my few years on this earth: family members passing, cancer, children being born, illness, layoffs, best friends made, loves lost, and a soul mate found. It really didn’t take me long to identify the one constant in my life…and that is my Church.
After many years selling outdoor gear and clothing, I am now a certified desk pilot with four walls that contain everything but my thoughts. Inevitably and uncontrollably, my mind will wonder straight to places without walls: the mountains I’ve hiked in, the hours beating the highway on road trips, and the lakes, rivers and streams I have fished. I think of the victorious feeling of getting my first big trout on the reel, the sound of the drag being ripped from the spool, and lifting that big rainbow out of the net with my still shaking hands. I think all the big ones that got away from the carelessly tied knots of my youth and the stomach churning feeling I got when the line waived the white flag of surrender.
It is in these times and places where I find my Church. It is where I have come to appreciate the blessings in my life and to contemplate my failures. It is where my soul retreats for repair and my spirit becomes galvanized. There are few members in my Church, but they are no less loyal to it than I. The doors to my Church are never shut and I will forever walk through them.
No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man. –Heraclitus