An Adventure Part 2

Mammoth Cave National Park has no cell phone service and Jesus knows best.

This past weekend I went on a two night camping trip with a girls troop I volunteer with. In the Fall of 2018, the older girls of the troop got to suggest fun activities or trips they were interested in doing. Visiting and camping at Mammoth Cave was on their list. If you’ve read ‘An Adventure’ (part 1), you know there has been several things that have taken place in my life lately. I’ve tried my best to keep to a schedule for the blog: 3 posts a week on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. Mind you, I’ve done well until this past week.

There was so much to catch up on after Adventure 1 and so much more to do before Adventure 2 that I hadn’t the time to type out a post for the blog this past Saturday nor for yesterday. Knowing I’d miss my Saturday deadline, I was frustrated at myself for not being loyal to the thing I felt God had lead me to take care of, yet I saw no way to fix it. To top it off, I had no idea what to even write even if I could find the time to do so. Every time I consider my next blog post, I pray asking God to give me the words someone needs to read, but during the end of last week nothing was coming to mind. When everyone woke up on Saturday, I thought ‘maybe I can type out a post quickly and publish it before our activities’ only to discover there is no cell phone service in the National Park. The Lord knew there was no way for me to update the blog and that’s why He didn’t give me a clue as to what to write about. Realizing this, I was able to let go of my frustration and forgive myself for thinking I wasn’t being loyal.

We started off Saturday morning with a wonderful breakfast cooked on a couple of Coleman stoves by the girls in the troop, percolated coffee, and laughter. The girls played card games as the adults cleaned up, then everyone got ready for a hike to the visitor center and a tour in Mammoth Cave. Several of the girls and myself had never been through the Cave before, so I was blessed not only to see the beauty God had created underground for the first time but to see the girls’ fascinated faces as they saw it, too.

What is funny is after we got out of the Cave and was climbing back onto the buses to return to the visitor center, I was the last one on the bus but the only seats open were for the park rangers. I went to the other bus, thinking ‘I might be separated from the group but if this is part of the journey Jesus wants me to experience then I’m game; let’s meet new people!’. Then a friend called me back to the other bus; the bus driver was letting us use the rangers’ seats. Needless to say, we pretended we were rebels that day. However, I’ll never forget that feeling of stepping onto a bus full of people I didn’t know and marveling at this new aspect of the journey, eyes wide with anticipation.

Our adventure didn’t end there, though. Not long after returning to camp we began to relax and prepare dinner. Before preparations began, however, it began to rain pretty well. About four or five hours later, the girls got ready to go to bed in their tents only to discover the tents that were donated to us three years ago or so had dry rotted and couldn’t take the weight of the rain water. Several of our items were soaked; what was salvageable was placed in a sheltered area. Our covered trailer was emptied with supplies placed under tarps so some of the girls could sleep in it and some of the adults slept in vehicles. The one good tent – brought by one of the mothers on the trip – was used for the remaining girls and their mothers.

By the time we got home Sunday evening, we were exhausted. When I finally walked into my apartment, I threw my stuff into the living room and crashed for the night. Thankfully, the Lord had advised me to take off this past Monday to recover from not just this adventure but the one before. Waking after a long night’s rest, I sat at the breakfast table Monday morning and thought about the weekend. Like the first adventure, this trip was planned yet had spontaneous moments. We were able to stick to the trip’s schedule – camp two nights, cook at certain times, and visit the Cave – but we hadn’t planned for the tents to fail or the bus to be full.

These moments will happen; there is no way to avoid them. We either deal with it happily, recognizing it as an interesting part of the journey, or we deal with it sourly and grumble and complain the whole time we try to adjust. Either way, we adapt. The beauty of this is, none of it has to be viewed negatively. It is only our minds that can view it as such. Yes, having unplanned occurrences happen is sometimes annoying and stressful, but it makes the trip more rememberable. The journeys we take in life aren’t just about us and what we want to do. It’s also about what Jesus wants to do with us and what He wants us to see. He gives us that strength to adapt and uses situations we may deem negative to shape us into better people.

Life is an adventure. Jesus is the driver and the navigator. He knows the destination, He knows how we’re going to get there, and He knows what we’ll see and/or face. He’ll even provide the tools and necessities we will need. All we have to do is trust in Him and enjoy the journey. Everything will fall into place if only we trust.

“But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. I will sing the Lord’s praise, for he has been good to me.”

Psalm 13:5-6

“for he guards the course of the just and protects the way of his faithful ones.”

Proverbs 2:8

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