Grand Canyon, Arizona -- I've seen it from the South Rim. I've seen it from Desert View. I've seen it in the distance from the north, somewhere around the Utah state line.
But I've never seen it like this.
During a recent visit with our oldest daughter and her husband near the Grand Canyon, our second daughter and I were treated to a surprise flight over and around the canyon. I cannot express -- in my own words -- how beautiful and magical that flight was.
It was in the early evening, so shadows were starting to fall across some portions of the canyon, and where the shadows were not hitting the rocks and mesas the colors were vibrant and as varied as the colors of the rainbow. It was almost enough to take my breath away.
As we flew closer to the rim, the land below us suddenly dropped off into the vast expanse of the canyon. I was immediately struck by how hard it must be to put the awesomeness of this sight into words -- my words at least. It was like looking at the bottom of an ocean that had been splashed with vivid colors and then drained so all could enjoy the beauty of it all.
While looking out the window of the small plane we were in, I remembered the lyrics of an Andrew Peterson song called "Nothing to Say."
"Hey, Jamie, have you heard ... A picture paints a thousand words -
But photographs don't tell it all ... I see the eagle swim the canyon sea ...
Creation yawns in front of me ... Oh Lord, I never felt so small."*
This was not a man made attraction. These valleys and crags and outcroppings and escarpments and pinnacles and majestic rock formations were not carved by human hands. These were not painted with brushes and oils on canvas to be hung in a gallery.
I knew then what I had always known ... That though the forces of water and wind had formed this grand vision, the river, rains and wind were but tools and brushes in the hands of the Creator.
"And the mountains sing Your glory hallelujah ... The canyons echo sweet amazing grace ... My spirit sails ... The mighty gales are bellowing Your name ... And I've got nothing to say."*
No, I've got nothing to say
* Note: From "Nothing to Say" by Andrew Peterson.