I am Blake J Merrell. Welcome to my tiny slice of the world wide web.

I am inspired by nature and find immense fulfillment as I visit the earths many places. I live in the beUTAHful beehive state and years ago they marketed the phrase "Life Elevated". I loved that phrase and made it my life's mantra to elevate life and rise higher.

It is my experience that as I descend in to the depths of massive canyons, or ascend the high mountain peaks, I find clarity, awe, and inspiration.

It is my life's aspiration to Akyat (Filipino word for climb).

Let's ascend to holy places and spaces; for it is in the journey of the climb where I have found immense satisfaction, clarity, and closeness with the Divine.

Elevate Life & Rise Higher!

Jacob's Dream of Angles Ascending as they Approach God

The Climb

As I was hiking in the Uinta Mountains this summer (2020) some thoughts came to me that filled my heart with awe and amazement. The heavenly insight began with the thought of climbing to the tops of the mountains toward a landmark signifying the North Pole or North Star.

Upward climbs involving sacred mountain spaces often suggest the effort required to approach God. “Come ye” beckoned Isaiah “and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths” and from Jacob we read: “And [I] dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it. And, behold, the Lord stood above it, and said, I am the Lord God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac... And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, Surely the Lord is in this place...this is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.”

Ascending mountains and climbing the ladder represent our personal journey back to God. It is taught that each rung of Jacob’s ladder to heaven represents the covenants we make with God, where each covenant lived, further enables you to “enter into his rest”

Climbing mountains and hiking 100 miles take serious preparation. In my case I started the journey of losing 30 lbs in January, as well as working for months to get my pack weight (everything including water and food) to weigh around 30lbs. It took months of dedicated work, research, and cash. It was a serious endeavor for me, and I was all in. Fully committed.

Likewise, to be successful in returning to God, preparation and a degree of seriousness is required. I was reminded recently of a mountain Christ climbed in order to deliver a critical message. The eternally important sermon on the mount was even given by Christ AFTER ascending a mountain. “And seeing the multitudes, [Christ] went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him: And he opened his mouth, and taught”

Multitudes of people swarmed Christ, probably for many reasons, so maybe to separate the bystanders from the disciples, the curious from the serious, Christ climbed! I like to think that the “dedicated disciples of Christ were the ones willing to climb the mountain to hear the Savior—not the curious miracle-seekers or the sheep-like tagalongs—and they were the ones who got to hear the Sermon on the Mount.”, even the new law of Christ's Gospel.

"God does not just want bystanders; He wants disciples. He wants us to live the gospel because we love and want to serve Him. So, to separate the curious from the serious, He will allow us to climb a ‘mountain’”—Christ will give us challenges that are designed to test our faith and commitment to him.