Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Hiking the PCT a home movie

Here is the movie for which you have all been waiting, enjoy.

video

God bless you.

Well Well Well

It feels good to feel good. My fever broke last night and this morning I am feeling so much better. I am going to eat a good breakfast and then head out to get caught up on my work. Janie and I will be attending a banquet tonight at the nursing home. It is for all those who volunteer to help with the activities such as church services.

Our youth/music director will be gone Sunday and I pray that the Lord's will may be done in his life. He has been a huge blessing to me personally and I admire him very much. I would love for the Lord to lead him to stay with us and am praying to that end.


Hiking: The Picture is of the place where we got water the second morning on the trail. We had run out of water and this was a sight for sore eyes. We had to filter the water because it its not drinkable as is. It comes from a tank just up the hill that the fire department fills with lake water for fighting brush fires. We drank a couple of liters here and filled up all of our canteens. This day would end up being our last on the trail. We met a young couple here who were having to leave the trail due to one of them having an eye infection. The other picture is of my brother sitting in the shade right behind the water box. He was feeling good at this point but in just a few hours from when this picture was taken he got a little nausiated. I gave him some Gateraide and he felt some better. It was very hot this day, I would say about 90 degrees. One of the things I like about hiking is the conversation. Steve and I talked about Bible stories and doctrines and various subjects related to church and worship. It was just a great time to enjoy nature and the great outdoors and to admire God's creation. God bless you.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Sick Sick Sick

My day has not gone at all like I planned. I woke up at 4:00 this morning and my body was like a school house. It was as if the fire alarm had gone off and every thing I had eaten in the last 2 days ran for the nearest exits. I have a small temperature and this chicken soup is staying down so far. I do not know if it is the same virus as my oldest daughter and her family had but if it is I feel compassion for them. I have too much to do to be sick. Pray for me. God bless you.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Back to the grind stone

We had a great Lord's day. Tomorrow it is back to the grind stone. We will go to the church house about 8:00 am and clean the building for it is our turn. We will then go to the nursing home where I will preach for the residence there. We will go to the bank and post office and then spend the afternoon mowing and cleaning up the yard at the parsonage. I plan to continue my walking each day for my health and strive to finish reading the Bible three times through this year. I am looking forward to seeing my niece and her husband in a few weeks as they make the move to TBI in Henderson.

More on the hike: We hiked a total of 22 miles on the first day and after our break at the picnic area we made it to this small creek in the bottom of a small canyon. This is a picture of my brother wetting his bandana in the stream to cool off, it was about 85 degrees at this point but the water was really cold. We were not low on water at this point so we did not fill our canteens believing that there was a water source just a few miles away. That water source turned out to be unreliable and we did not want to walk six miles back to this creek just to fill up so we continued on. That night I had only enough water to take my pills and I was exhausted. I slept incredibly well for sleeping on the ground that was badly sloping. The tent sagged really bad during the night and I woke up with the top of the tent just inches from my face. My brother had to wake me up on this morning because between the Advil and the Benedril I was out like a light. My brother gave me some of his water so I could choke down my breakfast and then we headed off for the water source that was just 2 more miles down the trail. I will give you more about his second day in my next blog post. The video of us hiking along the trail. We have just come out of the hills to a long flat section of the desert. The hills in the distance was our destination and it was at the base of these hills that we gave up and headed home. God bless you.



video

Friday, April 25, 2008

TGIF

We should not only thank God that it is Friday but we should be thankful every day for each day is a day that the Lord hath made and we should rejoice and be glad in it. I went for a walk this afternoon with my wife and enjoyed it. We spent the morning taking care of wedding business and taking my mother-in-law to the beauty shop. They will have a shower for my daughter tomorrow morning and while that is going on I will go for a long walk and meditate on the the sermon for Sunday. This means I will be preaching it aloud as I walk. It is a very long sermon and I may split it into 2 if it goes long.
The picture above was taken about 10:30 am at a picnic area along the trail. We stopped for a snack and to fill up with water. We had our Sunday morning service here. I preached and we were unknowingly joined by a hiker we had met and passed earlier that morning. We had a good Bible study and then walked to the water fountain just up the hill to fill our canteens. The cracker I am holding is one of a batch of "fire crackers" that one of my church members made for me to take on the hike. My brother just loved them and helped me consume everyone. On our way to the water fountain by brother walked right by this snake and did not see it. I walked past and turned around to take its picture. It was not a poisonous variety. It ignored us and we ignored it. It was only about 30 inches long. We were going to filter the water here but we found 2 unopened gallon jugs of water by the faucet so we filled our canteens from these and then headed off down the trail. God bless you.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Running the roads


Today is another driving day for me. I took my dad to the doctor's office this morning and Janie is gone this morning to take both of her parents to the dentist. We will leave shortly to drive 3 hours to Waco on wedding business and then 3 hours back to Henderson. Then Saturday we head home to Hillsboro and we will be glad to back. This vacation has not turned out at all like I expected but the Lord's will was done and we are here to serve Him.


This picture was taken on our first full day of hiking we did about 22 miles this day and ran out of water. Three of the water sources that were considered reliable were not. We were not in danger for we did find water early the next morning. This was a great day for hiking and we had a really good time. I will post more pictures taken on this day in the next post. I highly recommend hiking as a good past time. It is excellent exercise and you see some really beautiful sights. God bless you.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Traveling home



We will be attending a funeral this afternoon of my brother-in-law's sister. She was killed in a car wreck this past week. She has traveled home for she truly was a stranger and a pilgram here on earth. I traveled to Tyler this morning to bring my in-laws home from the hospital. They seemed glad to get back home. I will travel to town to get their car inspected for them and will travel over to my father's house to help him this evening with his lawn mower. I am looking forward to traveling back to Hillsboro and getting back into the swing of things there. I am glad to have my vacation come to an end for I am anxious to get back to my studies and my church family.

The picture is of my brother at our first camp sight. He is checking in by cell phone with his family. It was dark by the time we found a good camp site and we set up the tent by flashlight. I slept fairly well for the first night. I got about 4 hours of sleep and Steve got some less than that. It was barely daylight when we woke up and broke camp. There was some kind of bird with a very loud voice singing to us that morning. The temperature that night was 50 degrees which was just perfect. This section of the trail was shaded with lots of trees but in just a mile or two the trees were gone and the sun found us without any difficulty and beamed down on us the rest of the day. God bless you.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

I'm back




Well I am back now from California and it is good to be back. I had a great time and enjoyed the 2 days we were on the trail. We walked a total of 36 miles in 2 days. It was of God that we quit the trail for I got to spend time with my niece and her husband and gave them some counsel and as a result they are going to move to Texas to attend Seminary. Keep them in your prayers for this is indeed a big step in their lives. I got to preach Wednesday night in California and again this morning at County Line Missionary Baptist Church and again this evening at Landmark M.B.C. in Mount Enterprise. I enjoy preaching and never turn down an opportunity.


The picture above is of the bronze statue of John Wayne at the John Wayne airport in Orange county California. I arrived on time and so did my back pack. I waited on the curb for my brother to arrive to pick me up. We drove south about 2 hours and stopped to get a hamburger on our way to the trail. We arrived at the trail with a few hours of sunlight left so we loaded our packs and posed for this picture before taking off. I will tell more of the story of our hike in posts to come. God bless you.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Off the trail

Well, things were going fine until they had trouble finding water. Paul called at 5:30 p.m. saying they had decided to stop for supper and rest a few hours then start hiking through the desert this evening when it would be cooler. He said they had a sure water source since a creek ran through the area they were leaving from. He called back at 8:00 p.m. saying that the creek was dry and there was not a sure water source for too many miles. Since they did not have enough water to make it they were forced to call for someone to pick they up. I think they may do some day hiking through some of the areas that are really pretty. I am sure Paul will update his blog soon. I am glad they decided to come off the trail and not risk running out of water. Thanks for your prayers . God bless each of you. - Janie

22 miles today!! (Sunday)

Paul called around lunch time from the top of a mountain and said it was 70 degrees and beautiful up there. He called back this evening and said they had hiked 22 miles today and were tired but fine. They were just 1 mile short of what they had planned to hike for the day but it had gotten dark and they were tired so they stopped for the night at 22 miles. He didn't sleep very well last night but thinks he will sleep good tonight. They had a good time preaching to each other today. Paul preached the morning message and Steve preached the evening one. Sound like they are still having a good time. Keep them in your prayers. God bless you. - Janie

Saturday, April 12, 2008

He made it!!!

Paul called around 5:30 p.m. this afternoon and said he had made it to California with no problems. He called again at 9:45 p.m. and said they had arrived at the trail feeling energetic, since they filled up on hamburgers on the way, so since there was still plenty of sunlight they decided to hike some before making camp. He said it was cold when they started but they warmed up quickly. They walked 3 1/4 miles and had to set the tent up in the dark. He had a lighted cap (it had 2 lights built into the edge of the bill) that worked really well. He said that even though it was dark the tent was easy to set up. It sounded like everything was going well and they were having a good time. I will keep you posted on how they are doing.
Keep them in your prayers and may God bless each of you. - Janie

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Three more nights in a bed.


Well I have 3 more nights in a soft bed and then I will have 3 nights on the ground before I see a bed again. After that it will be 8 nights on the ground before I see a bed again. It is not possible really to explain the experience one has when long distance hiking. It lets you see how luxurious your life at home is. One of the things hiking teaches a person is that you really don't need a lot of stuff to get by in this world. Another thing it teaches is a dependancy upon God. We are dependent upon Him every hour of every day if we would but realize it. On the trail far from civilization your eyes are opened and you see just how much you need God. I live one block from a hospital, 2 miles from a police station and 2 miles from a fire station. The crime rate is low and it is easy to feel safe and secure at home. These things can blind one to the reality that it is God who protects us and cares for us. I am as safe on the trail miles from civilization as I am in the parking lot of a fire station, hospital, or police department. Obedience to the commands and will of God is that which makes one safe and secure (Deuteronomy 32:46-47). A horse is a vain thing for safety and the race is not to the swift nor the battle to the strong. I go hiking and as I go I put my trust in God.
My wife will be updating this blog as she hears from me on trail. She will not have pictures to post but will let you know how my brother and I are progressing. God bless you.

Out of Pocket

My son emailed me asking what dates I would be "out of pocket." I like that term. I like being "in pocket" so much that it seems strange that I am looking forward to being out of it. I leave Saturday for California. My flight leaves at 10:25 and my return flight arrives back 2 weeks later at 4:00 pm. I will not be any where near a bathroom, hot shower, soft bed, never mind a computer for those 2 weeks so will not blog until I get back. I will have much to say then and a lot of pictures to share. I am headed out this morning to give some tech support and then to the office to do some work. I will head for my father-in-laws Thursday afternoon. I better get to it, a lot to get done today. God bless you.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Worth it's weight


The picture is of my hiking gear spread out on the bed for review. I consider the weight of every thing and try to find the lightest version of that item. I have chosen to carry the full version of the Bible instead of the New Testament. I believe it is worth the weight. My brother and I will be spending much of our time talking about the Word of God and I will want the whole thing.

I am baby sitting with my grandkids this afternoon while Janie is out with my daughter and niece preparing for the up comming wedding. The youngest is protesting loudly about his nap so I will go and rescue him. God bless you.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Who says Mondays are always bad?


I have had a great Monday. Got a lot of work done. I took my car to the place where they change my oil and asked them to remove the deer parts from under it. They did and fixed one of the brackets that was badly bent and did an excellent job. When I went to the office to pay for the repairs they said "no charge"!! Wow! What a blessing. I plan to go by and purchase 2 dozen donuts (I can't spell Kolotcheese so I said donuts) for them in the morning and drop them by there to show my thanks. It was a very productive Monday for we were able to get the lawn mowed, the car fixed, the bank deposits made, a package mailed off to France, visted the family who lost a loved one, and closed the day with a great visit in the home of some very dear friends. What a great day!
The picture is of my one and only daughter-in-law. I praised my Son's-in-law and as much as I love them I love my daughter-in-law. She is a godly woman and is great with her children. She loves the Lord and we are blessed to have such a great daughter-in-law. I once told my son that if they ever split up we would keep her and let him go.
Tomorrow I plan to do some study on the sermon for the Sunday when I return from vacation. I will be baby sitting at least 3 of my grandchildren in the afternoon and if I am relieved in time will attend a funeral. I am going to close my day with a little clean up around the house and maybe review my hiking gear one more time before turning in. God bless you.

(Psa 34:8) O taste and see that the LORD [is] good: blessed [is] the man [that] trusteth in him.


The Lord is good indeed. I took this picture at my youngest daughter's bridal shower. God has used these two men to humble my heart. When I think how God has so blessed me with such wonderful Sons-in-law it makes me feel unworthy. I could not have been blessed with better for my daughters. I prayed for them ever since the time of their birth that they would be saved and that God would give to them husbands who were godly men. He has abundantly answered my prayer. Thank you Lord Jesus for interceding on my behalf to the Father for I am not worthy of the least of thy blessings! Thank you Sons-in-law for being men of God!

I have much work to do before I leave for the hike. I need to get things ready here at the house and review my equipment one more time so I had better get busy. God bless you.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

End of a busy week

Well it is Saturday night and the close of a busy week. I was able to get a lot done this week but have a lot to do before leaving for vacation. This week I will need to get sermons ready for the week after our vacation. I will need to get our yard mowed and get the deer parts clean off the bottom of our car. That's right I said deer parts. We hit a deer on our way home from Henderson and it left body parts all over the bottom of our car. I can see large pieces of deer hide and even a piece of a leg stuck under the car. I will jack it up and see if I can remove these Monday. It smells bad so I have parked the car outside for the night. There does not seem to be any damage to the car at all so I am glad of that. We were behind an 18 wheeler when the body of deer in the middle of the road appeared in front of us from between the trucks back tires. We had no time to swerve all we could do is hold on and run over the deer. I pulled over and looked the car over and saw no damage at all to the body.
I am glad to be home and am so looking forward to the services tomorrow. We will return to the Lord's prayer in John 17 and Sunday night we will continue the Life of Christ series. God bless you.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Love

Love is a wonderful thing. It makes you do things that you would not normally do. It makes you smile for the smallest of reasons. When you think of your beloved you just naturally feel good. This principle applies to more than human relationships. I have visited with people who were having a low day and as soon as you bring up the subject of something they love their countenance changes with the tone of their voice. It might be Jesus, wife, husband, son, daughter, boy friend, girl friend, grandparent, best friend, hiking, fishing, hunting, NASCAR, football or any of a whole host of things that people love that causes them to turn from negative to positive.

The opposite is many times the case as well. Someone who is on cloud nine and feeling happy and good can suddenly be brought down by the mere mention of that which they hate. It is most often a person rather than a thing that sparks this sudden change to the negative from the positive.
God wants us to love everybody. Even and especially our enemies. Instead of reacting negatively at the mention of their name we should feel that which God felt for us while we were yet sinners. If we love everybody we will feel the joy of the Lord upon every remembrance of every person that we know.
The picture is of my daughter and her fiance. It is amazing how the sound of her cell phone can brighten her eyes when she knows that it is he that is calling. She reminds me of me. God bless you.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Test flight


I walked 3 miles with the treking poles each having a 1/2 liter water bottle attached. It worked very well. I thought it might make my arms tired having to carry a pound of water but it did not seem to bother me at all. The bottles remained stationary and did not flop around. So I think the pouches are keepers. I'll put electrolytes in one bottle and plain water in the other or I may put snacks in one and water in the other pouch. Feel free to copy this Idea all you who plan to hike. God bless you.

Practical


I was accused of being practical. It is wise to be practical yet according to Ecclesiastes 3:1 there is a time for everything. I will not always do that which is practical but will strive to use wisdom when deciding a course that is not. Hiking is an exercise in practicallity. I have pictured here my treking pole with a pouch attached to it. This pouch will hold a bottle of water. I have one on each of my poles this one for water and the other one for snacks. This will allow me to snack and drink without having to remove my back pack every time. This is practical. Some would argue that hiking for fun is not practical. A tread mill in the safety and comfort of your own home would be a more practical form of exercise. Hiking in my case is about fellowship and communion with God. I hike to draw closer to the Lord. Hiking gives me time away from the things of this world and time to pray and meditate on the things of God. I would encourage everyone to do that which draws them to a greater faith in God and a realization of how much we need God each day. God bless you.