Rocks are synonymous with strength. I love being in the presence of majestic rises of rock that tower above me. A short hike up a steep path near my home rewarded me with this view yesterday:
Novelist Jane Austen put these words in mouth of her character Elizabeth in Pride and Prejudice: “What are men to rocks and mountains?” How can mere mortals compare to the grandeur of rock, of mountains?
The Bible talks of God as our rock: “My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.” (Psalm 61)
Near these sheer walls of rocks in my little part of the world are some rocks that speak of a role beyond shelter, majesty, beauty. These rocks had a part in the nourishment of the people who lived along the river for hundreds of years. They are grinding rocks. See the indentations on the rock face?
Sitting by river, the women ground acorns and berries on these rocks as they chatted and watched children scamper about. You can imagine the whole happy, life-sustaining scene, standing today on these grinding rocks. Through time, through serving in the preparation of countless meals, the rocks wore down. These rocks have a role reserved for only a few of their granite relatives.
Whether they speak of beauty, shelter, or everyday activities like food preparation, rocks inspire us to view time backward and forward, to see our lives in the context of something greater, something that existed before we were born and something that will be here after us, something the towers over us while also providing a firm place to stand on.
How about you? Where have you seen rocks and mountains that inspired you?