It’s hard to believe that it’s been six months already. I am blown away at all we’ve seen and done!
I tend to post more ministry related content, so I thought I would be good to do something a bit more personal today. Last night Jenna and I sat in bed watching a movie. I had to pause it as we dealt with the predictable bedtime routine of our children. “I need water, I can’t go to sleep, I need to go the bathroom.” Oh, the joys of bedtime.
When we came back to bed, the TV was now streaming recent pictures from our iCloud. Images from National Parks in Washington, California, Hawaii, Wyoming, North & South Dakota, and Arizona played alongside pictures of the kids and new friends we’ve met on this journey. I looked at Jenna and said, “I’m glad we took those, otherwise I would have forgotten most of it. Babe, look at everything we’ve seen this year! Wow!”
We’ve been blessed—too blessed.
We knew when we set out on the Trail Of Fire that the purpose was to lay the ground work for a national shift in our churches. I didn’t expect such a personal and family shift as well. We’ve grown closer as a family, grown closer to the Lord and learned so much.
Last night someone commented Facebook their concern that our children were being “deprived of much needed social skills.” Oh how naive! My children have met more people this year than in all the previous combined. They make new friends everywhere we go and Reijah keeps up with some online. She goes to school with students from Maine to Alaska and their education is pushing them beyond what they ever received in a traditional setting. Their world view has expanded coast to coast.
I remember growing up in my little rural town of Walhalla, SC. Ultimately I graduated with less than 100 people. Back then, my world barely stretched about 100 miles around me. Our church had a few hundred people in it and I thought it was huge. I’m thankful for that small town upbringing and those small town values are being instilled into our children. At the same time, we are introducing them to a much bigger world. Reijah is already realizing that she can touch the globe and she hasn’t even turned ten yet.
When we were in Theodore Roosevelt National Park, I picked up a biography on our 26th president. He is celebrated as on of the most influential presidents in history and his life reads like an unbelievable adventure story. By the time he was ready for college his family had already traveled several years abroad as well as around the US. Listen to this:
RECROSSING THE ATLANTIC in late October, Teedie turned fifteen. He was now, if not yet a man, then at least a youth of more than ordinary experience of the world. He had traveled exhaustively in Britain, Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East, visiting their great cities time and again and actually living in some for long periods. He had plumbed the Catacombs and climbed the Great Pyramid, slept in a monastery and toured a harem. He had hunted jackals on horseback, kissed the Pope’s hand, stared into a volcano, traced an ancient civilization to its source, and followed the wanderings of Jesus. He had been exposed to much of the world’s greatest art and architecture, become conversant in two foreign languages, and felt as much at home in Arab bazaars as at a German kaffeeklatsch, or on the shaven lawns of an English estate.
The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt, Morris, Edmund.
That global background become the soil for this great man grow. I read that paragraph to Reijah the other night. I told her, “Reijah, think about it. You could say before I turned ten, I’ve stood beneath the Eiffel Tower and before the Mona Lisa, toured the great cathedrals, climbed volcanoes, hiked the Grand Canyon, swam in the Atlantic and Pacific, been introduced to multiple cultures and witnessed God touch thousands.”
She said, I think I’ve grown more than I realize.
Who knows what Reijah, Caden or Chase will grow up to do, but I am certain it’s no small thing.
We are now in Knoxville, Iowa where we will be working with three churches over the next two weeks. I can’t wait to see all God will do. Keep us in prayer as we carry you in ours!
And.. check out a these pictures. It shows just a little of the scope of what the kids have seen in six months.