A Trip to Shangri La

We finally made it to Shangri La Botanical Gardens.  I’ve been wanting to go since we moved to Nederland.  The kids will be out of school in days so Jason and I thought we’d better steal away a date while we had the chance.  We started our tour about ten steps in front of three bus loads of kids and another bus from Houston.  As we approached the information center, the guide suggested we wait for the group (of two-hundred kids) before we watch an eight minute informational video and read literature explaining all that we were about to see.  I gave Jason the look, then he gave me the look-mine meaning “no way” followed by his agreement.

As we completely skipped our educational introduction into the gardens I brought up a valid point.  In bold letters wrapped around the entry way of the Education Center Gazebo are these words:

Drink in the beauty…and wonder at the meaning of what you see.

 Words quite contrary to an educational center I argued.  I love learning just as much as the next guy, but I thought skipping the crash course in botanicals might prove beneficial in this case.


I’m pretty sure we made an excellent choice.  We walked the gravel road alone shrouded in the mystery of God’s creation.  We couldn’t name most of the plants we saw, but that was ok.  We saw a roseate spoonbill (see I did learn something), but I feel sure if I hadn’t known its name, it wouldn’t have been any less beautiful.  We saw.  We wondered.  We marveled.

I believe the same is so with God.  I yearn to learn why God does what he does. How God does what he does. Learning is good, but there is beauty in mystery.  We won’t completely know God on this side of eternity as is his plan.  There’s something about being surrounded by the unknown that makes a person feel small and humble and swallowed up by beauty and majesty.

Check out these photos and wonder in wordless awe.

4 thoughts on “A Trip to Shangri La

  1. Melanie Morton

    i have gone with my school twice to Shangri La and i love seeing ALL of the beautiful things God has created.

    1. Kristiburden

      Hey Melanie.  We loved it.  We hope to go back and do the boat ride too.  Glad you're reading and commenting.  God's Girls come in all ages.  And I find it awesome when we can relate to each other.  Enjoy your last few days of school.  Hoping to see you some this summer. 

  2. Phyllis

    I've been several times but have not taken the boat. I love photography and on the water is a good place to get some great shots. I can't seem to get past all the beauty on the grounds.

    1. Kristi Burden

      Post author

      Hey Phyllis. I sure wish I could go some time while they have their scarecrow exhibition. I've wanted to every year, yet we've not been able to fit it in our schedule. Thankful we have such a beautiful place so close by.


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