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“It is good to praise the LORD and make music to your name, O Most High, to proclaim your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night…” (Psalm 92:1-2)
Cradle Mountain is Tasmania’s foremost natural icon, and for good reason: It is stunningly beautiful! (However, there are countless other places in Tasmania that are just as gorgeous, in my opinion.) Situated at the base of Dove Lake in Cradle Mountain National Park, Cradle Mountain rises 1545 m (5069 ft) above sea level.
I had just finished a difficult backpacking trip and sat down by the edge of Dove Lake to photograph the sunset. (You can read about this trip in: “Autumn Fagus Trail, Cradle Mountain National Park” (Tasmanian Wilderness Landscape Photography Series)). Cradle Mountain is often obscured by cloud or precipitation since Dove Lake itself sits at nearly 1 km above sea level. Perfectly still days are also rare, for icy alpine winds usually sweep down the mountains and make Dove Lake choppy.
To get a perfectly still Dove Lake sunset with a totally clear Cradle Mountain was truly an answer to my earnest prayers! Thank you, God, for hearing and answering me (for he actually gave me four straight days of this perfectly beautiful weather–which is virtually unheard of at Cradle Mountain)!
Days before I had been really struggling in the depths of trauma, but the Lord, in his amazing ways, had deeply ministered to me and enabled me to enjoy this beautiful, peaceful, quiet evening with him. Amazingly, on this stunning night at the height of the fagus color (nothofagus gunnii or Deciduous Beech), I was the only one there (aside from one other rushed photographer for a time). Wow…
I felt like God really wanted the alone time with me and seemingly cleared the park for that purpose. As I reflected upon my past backpacking trip, I could only see the love, faithfulness and kindness of God laced throughout the entire time. As I sat there I proclaimed, “…your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night…” (Psalm 92:1-2).
As twilight approached an unexpected visitor interrupted my solitude. A very bold Eastern quoll, no doubt attracted by the smell of my empty tuna tin, came right up to me and examined me for awhile. I could have nearly touched him. To see him so up close was an extraordinary blessing, but there was an even better blessing to come.
After I had photographed the night sky and was driving away at a snail’s pace to avoid wildlife casualties, all of a sudden a baby quoll froze in my headlights. He was one of the cutest things I had ever seen. He was so tiny, he easily could have fit within my hands, but he was such a baby, he had no idea what to make of this gigantic, bright, metal creature in front of him. He finally decided to run away down the road, but he was so little he hardly went anywhere. In fact, he was such a baby that it never occurred to him to run into the bush. Instead, he ran along the road as I crawled along behind him. Every few metres he would stop and turn around and look at me. He did this again and again….for the next 100+ metres. Finally, just when I thought I should get out of my car, scoop him up and put him in the bush myself, he hopped off the road. It was a blessing I will never forget!
This photo always brings me peace when I look at it, for it always reminds me of God’s lovingkindness and faithfulness during that time as well as God’s good ending to my very difficult journey.
“Peace I [Jesus] leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:14:27)