Our house sits in the middle a long slope. Behind it is a valley with rich, black farm fields, bird-filled forests and flowing streams. On the other side, beyond our front yard, the slope gently climbs up out of the valley to form a ridge of high, green hills crowned with a glassy lake.
The natural landscape surrounding our home is beautiful, but we can’t see it from our yard. The angle of the slope and the trees block our view.
If I walk about a mile to the west, I end up in the flats of the valley. The farm fields, this time of year lined with rows of tiny, new corn plants, surround me. Looking back to the east, the valley spreads out flat and open from where I stand, meeting the hills in the distance. A river babbles nearby.
It’s breathtaking. Especially in the morning when the sun in a cloudless, blue sky adds a soft gleam to everything from the tree leaves to the tractor working the fields.
When I stand in the valley and look up to the hills, I’m always amazed, somewhat surprised, that this beauty surrounds my house. Sometimes I forget what lies beyond the trees and at the top of the slope.
Like the landscape around our home, the topography of life is marked with peaks and valleys. High points and low points. Good times and bad. Yet much of life is lived in the middle of the slope. No turmoil, no excitement. Just the everyday. Kids, work, dinner, bedtime. Do it all over the next day.
And sometimes the forest of routine prevents us from seeing the beauty in our lives. When that happens it’s time for a new perspective. Take a walk outside yourself and ask, “What does my life look like from the valley?”
From my vantage point, I see a happy past and the accomplishments that brought me to the middle of the rise. I see an abundance of love and laughter in the present, and peaks of possibilities to climb in the future.
The view is lovely. Life is good, I’m reminded.
What do you see from your valley? You might be surprised.