Saturday, December 13, 2014


There is a way that seems right to a man, But its end is the way of death. Proverbs 16:25 (NKJV)

I was lost...exhausted...and worn out.  I had been hiking for most of the day, it was getting dark and cold.  Fog was developing and crossing my path making it difficult to see the trail, which was uneven and treacherous.  I was frustrated, because, I pride myself on being self-sufficient and I know how to handle myself in the Rocky Mountains or any wilderness for that matter... "Right," I said to myself. Time for the truth, I had made just about every rookie mistake someone could make out in the woods.  I was turned around and clueless as to the right direction leading to civilization.  I was under dressed for the dropping temperatures.  I was without adequate water or food. I was hiking through a hostile environment with lots of wild animals, such as bears.  I did not have matches and little hope for building a fire with any survival method given the downpour of rain.  

What was I to do?  I decided, after hiking 20 miles in the wrong direction that I would simply turn around and hike the 20 miles back.  I would be soaked to the bone, but it did not look like it would turn into snow; I needed to keep moving to stay warm regardless.  The biggest challenge would be hiking in the night with no light and a night sky that was covered with clouds.  I breathed a prayer, turned around, and set off for the second half of my adventure.  I was reminded of a spiritual truth that is actually recorded twice in the Proverbs.  "There is a way that seems right to a man.  But the end is the way of death."  Not an uplifting thought, but appropriate for my decision-making process that day.  I was also thinking, "Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My..."

After hiking for another 6 miles and with night time arriving, I crossed a small paved county road. I looked down the trail and I considered the road.  It was 14 miles through the woods to the trail head where my car was parked.  It was 23 miles down the county road to that same trail head. I pondered, "Hike in the dark down a trail...hike in the dark on a road?"  I chose the road.  I covered another 5 miles down the road, when I saw the headlights of a car approaching me from behind.  My new friends sat me in the front seat--bundled me in a blanket, and gave me a bottle of water.  18 miles later I was alive and well at the trail head.  I profusely thanked my rescuers, jumped in my car and headed to civilization.

I was so sure of myself.  (First Mistake)  I was sure I was headed the right direction.  (Second Mistake)  I was sure that I was adequately outfitted.  (Third Mistake)  When it comes to my decisions in life, am I also blinded by my illusions of grandeur?   Maybe?  Probably?  Absolutely!  Like it or not, I am dependent on God.  He is my moral compass and my spiritual guide.  If I am depending on myself to find the right path in life for myself, it will be trouble!  Time to trust in Jesus: "The way, the truth and the life!!" 

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