Sunday, October 12, 2008

Oh Canada! Part II

So, I had us caught up through Saturday night…

Sunday we got up and went (again) to Starbucks and opted to head out, first, the Capilano Suspension Bridge as it was supposed to rain that afternoon. It was AMAZING!!! I seem to use that word a lot to describe my trip, but it really was amazing! The bridge was originally built back in 1889. It’s 450 feet across and 230 feet above the Capilano River in North Vancouver.

Isn’t it cool looking??? We both thought that we’d be nervous walking across a bridge suspended over a rushing river, but it actually wasn’t all that bad. When there were a lot of people on the bridge it would sway a bit back and forth and that just made it more difficult to walk, but if there was just a couple of us on the bridge it was more of an up and down bouncing type of motion. I can’t even adequately describe the view. Huge trees as far as the eye can see and the sounds of the breeze blowing through the trees as well as the river below our feet. Completely breathtaking! You really felt as though you were up in a tree house because once you crossed the main suspension bridge, there were a bunch of lookout points and several other smaller suspension bridges that went between the trees. There was even a large treehouse at one point! At some points on the trail, when you were on one of the suspension bridges, you were literally walking up amongst the trees…the ground was far below you, but you still couldn’t even see the tops of some of the trees. We had a great time and both of us agreed that it was probably the highlight of the trip thus far.

Here are a couple of pictures taken while we were in Capilano.

We drove back and picked up Angela and then headed off to Queen Elizabeth Gardens. I don’t really know any details/history about this park, but, of course, it was gorgeous. You would have thought that it was still Spring. All of the flowers were in bloom and all of the trees were green and there were small waterfalls throughout the park, along with a Conservatory and Rose Garden. Pictures say more about this park than I ever could (and even they don’t do it justice).

Next, we were off and running to meet up with a couple of the other Passion Vancouver volunteers to have dinner and go to an evening church service. We met up with Kimberly, Michele and Mike. Kimberly and Michele were also volunteering with Jamie and I and Mike had been assisting with a couple of volunteer items, but he had just graduated from high school, so he was actually going to be attending the conference, verses volunteering at it…which was really so important given his age and that he had never experienced one before. It was so great getting to know him better. I think what really struck me was the heart he has for God. He was uber excited about the conference…more so than I had seen anyone in a long time. He is so hopeful that the Passion Conference (Vancouver has never had a collegiate Christian conference before) was really going to stir people’s hearts and that God was going to use it in a mighty way. It was really exciting for all of us to see his excitement because he is what Passion is all about; and, yes, I do see a lot of college-aged students at these events and I do speak with some of them, but it was really exciting to be able to spend some time getting to know one of them and to hear how God is working in his life. After dinner we went over to a church service and we were about 40 minutes early, so we were able to arrange to borrow one of their prayer rooms and we spent the next 30 minutes or so praying for the Passion Conference the next day and praying for Mike and the students on his campus. It was another favorite part of my trip. I used to always be very anxious about praying out loud with others around. I suppose I was afraid that I wouldn’t sound ‘holy’ enough or something. So many people are eloquent speakers and their prayers always sounded so polished and thorough. I used to absolutely dread the beginning and end of small group because I’d be holding my breath wondering who was going to be picked for opening and closing prayer. It still isn’t something that’s super easy for me, but I’ve found that I pray (before I pray) that God will speak through me and give me the words and that He’ll help me to let go of my fears and anxieties and just speak from my heart…after all, God knows what’s in my heart, so even if I can’t articulate myself well, He still knows what I mean and I have to make His opinion of me, the most important one- above everyone else’s.

I’ll finish up with Part III tomorrow… I have to stop doing these late at night…too tired :-)


Sara Warren said...

That bridge is CRAZY, Julie! I want to go on it! I think I'd be scared though.

I used to feel that way too about praying in front of people. I still would prefer opening prayer versus closing prayer, just because sometimes they ask for someone before class starts to do our closing prayer and then I use to spend the whole time worrying about doing the closing prayer. Thankfully I've gotten over that.

Sounds like an amazing trip!