It’s early morning on a spring day. The sun’s rays are quickly chasing off the fog. The water in the bubbling brook and the wild flowers peeking thought the snow greet two hikers. They are college students, desperately in love, cherishing precious moments together. Following the Smoky Mountains trail up and down the hills, they attack the rough terrain, while in the valley below the brook widens and the musical sound of the rustling water fills the air. The majestic mountains tower above.
The lovers stop frequently to embrace. At the trail’s end the blaring, boisterous water leaps over Abrams Falls and drowns out the couple’s concerns and fears. Hand-in-hand they pledged their love . . . Our love for each other will flow just as constant as this waterfall for as long as we both shall live.
Leap forward four decades. Years have passed but the path to Abrams Falls is unchanged. It’s another beautiful spring day. The lovers on the path are now parents and grandparents. They walk more slowly but just as intentionally. Hand in hand, they steady each other over the rough places. Years of the trials of living have gone by, but still in love they slowly traverse the hills and valleys. Stopping to rest, they embrace. They kiss and remember stolen kisses here on this path so many years ago.
Once again they listen to the roar of Abrams Falls. They watch the sparkling water cascade over the rocks, smooth from centuries of contact. So much in life has changed, yet Abrams Falls seems the same. The same rocks, the same towering mountains, the same rushing water, the same peace.
Suddenly they realize they are standing on holy ground. Reverently, they listen, and their Heavenly Father, the Creator of Abrams Falls, the Creator of love, speaks in a still, small voice to their hearts:The beauty of nature and the ability to love is my gift to you. Your love, which has endured the rapids and waterfalls of life, is your gift back to me. Embrace. Kiss. Cherish and celebrate your love in the afternoon of your lives.
You are always new. The last of your kisses was ever the sweetest.