Friday, July 9, 2010

Thawing Cold Hearts

Dana and I climbed to Agnes Vaille Falls three weeks ago, in the mountains outside of Buena Vista, Colorado.  Agnes Vaille isn't a hard climb, lots of dogs and children.  But, it is always a great introduction to the thin air of the mountains before harder trails.  You climb along a rushing stream to the falls and look up to see it cascading over the rim, probably sixty or seventy feet above, bouncing off boulders to where you stand.

Agnes, like most of the water in the Arkansas River Valley, is fed by snow melt.  Because of unusual heat a few days before our trip, the snow melted so fast that the Arkansas River was flowing over forty-five hundred cubic feet per second creating dangerous white water.  When we arrived, it had settled to a more normal, but still stout, twenty-five hundred. As temperatures warm in the summer, snow packs melt, then icy water flows down Agnes Vaille and countless other streams to the Arkansas River providing wonderful hiking, sightseeing, and rafting. Without the snow melt from the mountains, Agnes Vaille Falls and the entire whitewater industry on the Arkansas river wouldn't be

When our children have lost heart, they can be like the snow pack that sits on top of the mountain, not making a difference.  Stuck.  Not fulfilling their purpose.  Until someone comes along who warms them, who touches them so that they melt and join the race down the mountain with others fulfilling the best God has for them.

How do you warm a cold, lost heart, a child who has given up and does not have the courage to try? How do we keep a child's warm heart flowing?

Unconditional love can penetrate and warm any heart.  When we love a child as God loves us, freely and without regard to what we do or don't do, the child has no reason to stay cold.  Love, God's way, is patient since some hearts need time to melt life's snow pack.  Does your child know you love him or her like this? Freely and patiently, not only when she is "good" or he makes you happy but when there is no response.  Being accepted and cherished, without condition, lets the warmth of love thaw a lost heart, freeing the child to take the next step toward joining others pursuing God's call on his or her life.  The mighty Arkansas River is nothing without warmth starting the flow, just like our children.

Photo from a great site at

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