If nature is the doorway of God’s wild beauty, then adventure is crossing the threshold with intention. It’s not enough just to know it’s there or to merely bring pieces of it into my house; it must be entered into. This call of adventure is an invitation to experience sights, sounds, scents, and textures that draw us out of ourselves and into what’s happening beyond the sterile and controlled environments we have built around us.
I believe the pleasure of God is in the adventure—in the sound of fishing poles clacking while hiking down the trail, the picnic on the river, the casting and mending of the fly rod’s thick white line under a wide blue sky; in the waxing of the board, the salt crystals forming on hair and eyelashes after surfing—yet we don’t often recognize it. When we do, it’s like opening an elegantly wrapped gift in the presence of the giver: there is mutual anticipation, mutual delight. He saw what he had made and called it good, and he wants us to revel in the good he made.
But, too often, we merely spend our days checking off the to-do list. He gave us senses he wants to fill, yet we’ve allowed them to be dulled by screens, by busyness, by duty. Sometimes the last thing on our minds is enjoying creation, looking for adventure.
Maybe it’s because work is relentless; the hamster wheel spins too fast to step down without face planting. Maybe it’s because going off the beaten path takes a bit of effort, more than we think we can afford. Maybe it’s because encountering nature can be an unpredictable thing, a bit frightening, because we might find ourselves in a situation we can’t control. But I’m pretty sure that’s where God meets us, in the space where we set aside our agenda and learn to be openhanded with his will for the days of our lives.