Hard Beauty.

July 22, 2015

At first glance, this space is paradise: snowy mountain peaks rising above forests of conifers, crystalline blue lakes tucked into valleys, wild flowers carpeting meadows and open places with rainbow hues.

It isn't until your boots are crunching across rocks, your breath a little harder to catch than normal while scrambling up the trail, that you start to understand that there is something deeper to all of this undeniable beauty.  

Life at an altitude of 10,000 feet is hard.
Spindly conifers stretching tall and lean toward the sun live in precariously thin soil on rocky mountainsides. 

Delicate alpine wildflowers survive nightly temperatures have hover near freezing, even in July. 

Those incredible clouds rolling over the peak just yonder can suddenly turn your morning romp through the mountain meadows into a mad dash for the trail head as thunder rumbles in the distance and as a wall of rain closes out the glorious sunshine.  
Breathtaking beauty so often goes hand in hand with hard circumstances.  

And so here we, the girls of TRE, our families along with many friends, find ourselves, sipping coffee during the early morning hours on the eve of Climbing Day.

We celebrate Katrina Serenity Stigman with this final, 10th Anniversary hike for Katie's Club in this land of hard beauty up Mount Holy Cross.

We celebrate her life. Her legacy. Her breathtakingly beautiful response to life when it got impossibly hard. And, most importantly, her unshakeable faith in Christ.
We love you, Katrina. 

Lord, show us beauty in the impossibly hard places in life. Bring comforting memories and laughter to our lips as we remember those we've loved deeply. Hold us close as we navigate circumstances that are bigger than ourselves, and help us to do it with the same abundant grace and faithfulness that made Katrina so beautiful, inside and out.    



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