WEEKLY CHALLENGE: Remember The Details

Wrong boots, wrong socks, and poor foot management can lead to painful foot problems even beyond blisters. Now couple that with rough, steep terrain hiked over an extended period of time and the suffering can be out-right debilitating.

I know this pain. During 8-days of backpacking in the San Juan mountains of Colorado, I trashed both of my feet.  The pain was excruciating and every step was a battle to take. But there is a wonderful by-product to pain; I remember that day with such clarity. That extreme pain became the element that kept this, otherwise wonderful, experience clear and retrievable in my life.

Don’t let the idea and possibility of pain keep you from experiencing a new adventure. Embrace the pain as part of the adventure that will allow you to recall the other fine details of that epic event in your life.

Christ suffered on the cross as He gave His life for us. I am sure that He remembers that day with such clarity, and as we approach the Easter season remembering His suffering, I have to believe that He is still thinking of me. Take heart, you may not like the pain and suffering of life, but it does help us to remember the important, life-transforming moments that are a part of our adventures.

WEEKLY CHALLENGE: Anticipation

One of the aspects of an extended backpacking trip that I truly enjoy is the anticipation of the trip. I love how it occupies my thoughts, as I try to imagine every day out on the trail, every activity and how I will spend the nights.

Mental impressions and images of crossing mountain streams, and on the other side taking the time to fill up my water bottles.

Scenes of preparing a well-deserved evening meal as a small fire begins to glow, inviting me to sit by it way too late into the night. But the sleep sacrificed is invested in the honest, fun, life-bonding conversation with wonderful people around that campfire.

And just the thrill of thinking of finishing the quest! Oh so many experiences run through my mind – it consumes me. I can hardly think of anything else.

When my mind is focused on that coming event, I find I am more productive in planning and preparing for it. I waste less time, because now if I have time on my hands, my thoughts lead me to a task that takes me one step closer to that moment.

I want this to be a great picture of my life – but beyond an extended trek into the backcountry – I want this to be the picture of my walk in life, the adventure that I live every day as a child of God and follower of Jesus Christ.

I am thrilled and want to be consumed with the anticipation of being home one day, in Heaven with my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. In the meantime, may my thoughts, planning and preparation be saturated with anticipation of what it will be like when I see Him face-to-face and I am in His presence.

Oh may that consume your life too, if you know Christ as Savior. It will be hard not to live a productive, meaningful life if we are focused on seeing Him someday soon.

But our citizenship is in heaven; and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ: – Philippians 3:20 The Holy Bible (ESV)

WEEKLY CHALLENGE: The Call of Nature

A big problem to deal with while on an extended backpacking trip, is dealing with the “call of nature.” What do you do? How do you do the do? Well there are a couple of lines of thinking on this one, the most extreme being – “it wasn’t on or next to the trail when you went in, so pack it out”. But if you’re not that much of a nature lover, small footprint type of trekker, you are probably going to manage your deposits with care and discretely. That is just being responsible.

Creativity comes into play on the “how” and if you message me I would not mind sharing techniques and methods. Trust me, I have experimented so that I could share with others, including thinking of my 3 girls, how do I teach them, what do I teach them, how do I help them manage this part of a long trip into the backcountry.

But at the very least let me say this, you can’t hold it in forever. Sorry if that is a little too graphic, but I am about to make a point. When it comes time, it will be dealt with, so you might as well be prepared and have a plan.

Our sin, will one day be dealt with also. You can’t keep it in or hidden forever. Either you let Christ deal with it on the cross and accept His completed work on the Cross, or you will have to deal with your own sin some day at the end of your life. (Hebrews 9:27 – And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:)

His plan is not messy for us. He has it all figured out and we come out spotless, clean and with a new life in Him. But if we deal with it ourselves we will only make a bigger mess and it will never get cleaned up. We will spend an eternity separated from God and Christ trying to figure out how to clean this mess of sin up, but without any success.

The Bible teaches us in Romans chapter 6 and verse 23, that the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Don’t hold it in any longer, let it out. Confess your sin and receive the free gift of eternal life that is found in Jesus Christ. He dealt with your sin already on the cross – take the gift – leave the mess behind.

WEEKLY CHALLENGE: Getting Clean

After 7 days on the trail one of the greatest experiences is a hot shower! Oh to be clean again, and to crawl into bed without the body odor and stinky feet stuck inside a sleeping bag and having to sleep in that closed atmosphere…. Yeah, its hard to beat that clean, fresh feeling of a hot shower.

Walking down life’s paths can get us pretty dirty too – sin affects us all, and every day. Sometimes we choose to go to bed in our stench and wake up and continue in it for another day.

But in time, others won’t want to be around us and our own filthiness will wear on us too. But here is where we can enjoy the washing of the water of the Word of God (Ephesians 5:26). God is so ready to cleanse us of our sins, if we will just confess them to Him – 1 John 1:9 – “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

You’ve been walking long enough – take a shower today… enjoy His forgiveness…

WEEKLY CHALLENGE: Planning

Part of the adventure is the actual planning and preparation. I’m up to my ears in the planning and prep for this ride across Texas. As anxious as I am to get in the saddle and ride for 10 – 11 days, I understand the principle and importance of preparation in our lives. God spent 5 full days and part of the 6th in preparation for the arrival of Adam & Eve.

If you want to have a great adventure with God, be sure to spend the time in preparing your heart. Talk with Him today, listen to His Word today, follow His Spirit today.
The Christian Life – the greatest adventure you will ever know!

THE ADVENTURE BEFORE US

Sometimes, in order to set a person on a new path in life, it is necessary to intervene and redirect. NPA has a 7-day backpacking adventure designed to help reach, rescue and restore a life at-risk. If you are concerned about your own life and the direction that you’re headed or you know someone who needs some intervention before it is too late, this just may be the experience for them.

7 days along the Colorado Trail, and climbing to the top of Mt. Shavano, is time enough to consider a new path for life – one that leads to peace and a positive purpose for living. Partial and full scholarships are available. Adventure Openings available for July 2013

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Reach. Rescue. Restore.