Posted by: pmarkrobb | July 6, 2017

tall column of Cloud

We’ve been vacationing this week with my Mom and Dad, sister and her family in the Great Smokey Mountains.  A week in the trees (a beautiful cabin nestled in the forest near the very top of a small mountain ridge) to honor and celebrate fifty years of marriage.  One of the most treasured activities of the week has been to sit on the second level deck first thing in the morning, looking out over the forward valley and layer upon layer of mountains in the distance.  The most pronounced feature of our daily observations has been the “smoke” that defines these mountains.  Low-level clouds seem to “appear” or move in (predominately from stage left) and float between the distant “channels” formed by the mountain ranges, pushed along by a soft and unseen current.  Our cabin has one of the best views of the mountains, valleys, and the smoky dance.

This particular morning, we experienced something we hadn’t all week.  As varied as the movement of the “smoke” has been, it was startlingly unique today.  As my sister gathered cups for a second round of coffee, the wind freshened and a “tall” and thick mass of smoke rolled in from our right.  It was the most substantial single gathering of smoke we’ve seen all week.  It made us sit up in our rockers and take notice.  At the same time, another wave of smoke began to spill over the ridge that runs along the right side of the cabin.  All were moving at the pace of the freshening wind.  It was the first time this week the smoke was pushed so severely by the palpable force of the wind.

We couldn’t take our eyes off the tall column of cloud.  It moved organically in and through a nearer channel.  It changed shape, but stayed together.  It commanded the valley as it glided softly across the swale and ridges.

As i sat, then stood, and observed, my mind and heart went to the nation of Israel being led by the great cloud that was God’s presence as they “wandered” through the wilderness.  The wandering was from their perspective, not that of the great Cloud.  As the cloud moved, they moved.  When it stood still, they stopped and waited with it.

As i sat down to write (even while the great column of cloud was still visible to our left) i experienced the very breath of the Spirit with each inhale.  Have you ever “heard” God?  Have you “seen” Him?  i’d suggest you have, because i know i have.  And i believe i did this morning.  i am not necessarily suggesting He was in the tall column of cloud, but how big is your God to believe that He was?  And while He may not have been in the great gathering of smoke this morning, i’ve experienced Him with every inhale as i’ve typed.  My God is big enough to absolutely believe that.

How big is your God?  How close is He … right at this very moment?  Taste and see that the LORD is good (Psalm 34:8) … who looks on the earth and it trembles, who touches the mountains and they smoke!” (Psalm 104:32)


  1. Thanks for sharing a bit of your vacation and the Smokey’s with us! 50 years for your mom and dad – Golden! 🙂

    I am able to “taste and see” some of which you write as I ponder our Father’s world, His Spirit’s moving and my brothers narration. 🙂 All good!!

  2. Thanks for sharing, I feel like I just had a mini vacation. 🌤⛅️☁️⛅️🌤

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