Thursday, April 23, 2015

War and Peace from My Volcano


Living Lessons: War and Peace from My Volcano Experience
By: Christopher Wiles

Photo I took of the sign at Volcano Poas.  Keep calm if it erupts. Yeah .... riiiiiight.
Topher at Poas Volcano on April 21st, 2015

Two days prior to my writing of this I was standing at the top of the crater at Volcano Poás in Costa Rica.  The pool at the top was steaming.  The crater was lifeless as it boasts of one of the most acidic lakes in the world.  The air stunk of a sulfuric acid mixture.  The last eruption was in 2011, but you could still feel the heat standing 40 meters away.  The place gives you a sense of tension, devastation, and power.  You felt as though the temperature war within the earth was ready to escalate at any moment. 


Steam Rising from Poas.
Then I walked 500 meters away through a dense rainforest trail to a beautiful pristine blue lagoon.  The birds were chirping, the butterflies were dancing, and a squirrel was happy to eat a peanut butter cracker snack with me.   Lake Botos too was a lake in the crater of an eruption.  Yet over the course of 1000's of years (this one may have erupted around the time of Job in the Bible) that violent and destructive eruption has created a magnificent sanctuary for life and peace on the Poás mountain. 

Lake Botos Lagoon 4/21/15
I was amazed at the beautiful peace that followed a once violent destruction.  Then I am reminded by God that peace often comes from war, tranquility from trial, harmony from harrowing situations.   Why else would God inspire these words from James the brother of Jesus, "2 Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. 4 And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing." - James 1:2-4

We all have tumultuous, turbulent, and testing trials happening at different points in life.  You might be experiencing one now.  If you are, you can still keep your chin up and have joy, knowing that God has declared through creation and through scripture, that peace comes from war for those who serve Him.  So do not lose hope in the middle of trial, rather seek joy and "Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you." - 1 Peter 5:7


Here are a few of the photos I took comparing life around the crater to life around the lagoon and nearby forest.  You can find my whole set of Volcano photos by clicking HERE.
View of the entire crater from 2011 eruption with Nadia (Costa Rica).
View of Lake Botos Lagoon water with friends Alexi (Belgium) and Eva (Germany).
Local wildlife in the park away from the crater.

Local plant life in the park away from the crater with Hanna (Germany).

Local wildlife in the park away from the crater.

Local plant life in the park away from the crater.

Local wildlife in the park away from the crater.
 You can find my whole set of Volcano photos by clicking HERE.