I have returned from a four month hike on the Appalachian Trail much richer for the experience. I first hiked the trail in Virginia. I then began the trail in Maine in the most challenging terrain on the AT. I hiked until PA then went back down to VA and hiked until I reached the southern terminus at Springer Mountain, Georgia. My plan is to return to the trail next spring to finish the southbound hike through PA and MD. I will then have hiked this trail both north and south - a feat few have done.
But why? Why do something like this? I questioned that myself. Until God began to whisper to me the answer. That it is good too remove oneself from familiar circumstances where you are in control, where things are comfortable, and venture out into the unknown, placing your very life on the edge of a cliff, so to speak. I asked God as I hiked this summer and fall why I am out here like this. What does He intend to show me? I enjoy His creation, of course. The mountains and a new sunrise and sunset. But the trail teaches me that He is all I ever need in life's journey. In future blogging I will delve into the many ways He miraculously provided for even simple things like food, water, shelter; helped me find the answer to questions and contemplations of my heart, gave me endearing friends and families along the journey, and enriched my life as a person and a writer so I might share with others what I have learned.
And here is a major lesson learned. Never shrink back from embracing a new adventure that may put you into a place of vulnerability. Allow God full reign in that place. Give Him your cares, your worries, your fears, your discomforts, your goals and dreams. Let Him be the guiding force in making what you desire come true, and fulfilling your destiny here on earth. We have such a short time here to do what He wishes in and with our lives. Don't ignore the open doors of opportunities. Don't shut out possibility, even if it might be scary to you. Open your arms wide to receive and take steps forward in faith. Then watch what He will do and stand in awe.