My family loves the outdoors. We struggle to find time to get away but, when we do, we morph into a modern day “Swiss Family Robinson”. In reality, if the AC unit goes out on our camper trailer, we’re out of here. As long as that dude is humming, we’re hard as nails. Joking aside, we do love to hike. I grew up in Scouting and lived in a small town where there was no shortage of places and opportunities to get in the woods. I also spent some time in the Army where “hikes” were decidedly less fun and infinitely harder. We’ve found it to be a good way to get away from the emails, texts, and phone calls and find a slower pace to find peace from the business, revisit our values and restore ourselves.
For my wife and daughter, the thrill is on the trail. They love finding waterfalls, cliffs and streams for photo opportunities, rock throwing, wading and splashing. I love this time with them as well. There’s a different category of happiness that God has reserved for men when they spend time with their family in His creation. Perhaps my favorite “Man time” however, is in the preparation at the Trailhead. Ticking the boxes on a checklist and knowing that I have prepared well for any eventuality short of the Apocalypse somehow keeps my man-card up to date: “First Aid kit….check”, Water…check, flashlight with extra batteries…check, satellite uplink for global communication…check”. (I’m only half kidding on that last part…if I knew where to get one; it would be on the pack list.) Part of this comes from years of Scouting where we were taught well to “Be Prepared”. It was also engrained in us during U.S. Army Basic Training so we were always “Mission Ready” when we arrived at the objective. The greater pride comes from being the leader of my household and knowing that I’ve done my level best to care for the family that God has entrusted to me should the unexpected occur away from civilization.
This “trailhead thinking” has translated well to all aspects of life. As I write this, I stand at “The Trailhead” of a new adventure with my first blog. I’ve always enjoyed reading and writing. For the last year or so, I’ve felt God calling me to blog. I’ve since spent a lot of time arguing with Him kind of like Moses did when God asked him to lead His people out of bondage in Egypt “Not me, God…pick someone else!” God has persisted and, out of obedience, what you’re reading is my first step out in faith that His plan is greater than my fears and apprehension. Not knowing how to do much more on the internet than key a question into a search engine, this adventure required a lot of trailhead preparation before taking this first step on the trail. As this thing moves forward, if you return to the site and it still works, rest assured it’s a “God thing” because I’ll be busy re-watching how-to videos every time I want to post!
What adventures do you have coming up in your life? New job? Lost job? New addition to the family? Creating a blog? I would encourage you to first make sure you’re on the right trail by asking God and seeking his direction in the Word, in Prayer, and in quiet listening for His voice. Once He shows you the way, I encourage you to employ trailhead thinking in preparing for the adventure ahead and get moving! Don’t wait a year like I did…just like hiking a new trail for the first time, there’s no way to know for sure what lies ahead. The adventure lies in hitting the trail and finding out!