Page the Second


A fronte praecipitium a tergo lupi. (In front of you, a precipice. Behind you, wolves.)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012


Life had gotten a bit more complicated, suddenly. Isn't it interesting how you go down one road and feel you can see the end of it? You very well may. But often we don't see every turn we need to take to get there. It's quite like the maze in the movie, "Labyrinth". We think we know where we are, but some crazy little creature is going behind us or in front, changing all the road signs and switching the doorways.

I just spent some time at camp this last week. I went because it was a duty expected of me, and because girl's camp is FUN. I greatly looked forward to helping the girls certify, to making friends with them, and to pick them up when they fell down. My own concerns I had planned to leave at the bottom of the mountain.

But along came that strange little goblin switching things around =>  <= and soon I found myself learning a few unexpected principles. I learned: 
1. Let it go. There are things much more important than personal pride.
2. Sometimes you've just got to obey despite your feelings.
3. (Something I experience over and over.) God takes care of His servants.

Often we hash over the hurts and annoyances someone does to us, picking at the scabs until they re-bleed. All this does is keep our energy forever uselessly flowing away from us. Let it go. Let the aggravation bleed away instead of the peace. I learned this while looking out over the misty valley one morning. The world was quiet except for a few birds and a cricket somewhere. God told me to empty my hands of burdens so that he could fill them with peace. It felt so good to lay those bundles of annoyance away. I breathed the pine-y breeze in, and my soul was full.

There are times in my life when I've held onto a grudge for way too long. He told me to lay those grudges next to the other bundles. I'm still trying to do that, but I made a start.
#5438009 Hiker Resting

The last principle is something God teaches me constantly--that of His care for me. I'd been running up and down the hill to the lodge from my camp at the bottom. Each time I was reminded how very out of shape I am. I gasped like a dying fish as girls raced past me. I wondered how in the world I'd make it on the third year hike. We would be hiking down to Mud Springs. 

As mileage goes, it was a laughably tiny hike. Anybody could do that six-mile romp. Heck, my husband can run that trail down and back up. I, on the other hand, was highly doubtful that I'd make it before the next ice age. My knees both have torn PCL's and I have a bum left foot. I'd gone from ballet dancer to half-crippled old bat in the blink of an eyelash. (Discouraging)

So the night before, I loaded up on water (causing an unbelievable three races to the privy across a stony baseball field, through a copse of trees, and down a treacherous hill with a dimming flashlight), and I began to pray. I knew I'd never make it without prayer. I was determined to go on the hike, but I didn't want to be "THAT" woman who foolishly has to be retrieved by more fit people.

The next day I was inspired to get a couple of Ibuprofens and a stick (which I named Hector and later replaced with Heffe when Hector gave its life retrieving another stick named Bob for one of the girls). The Ibuprofens made it so my legs didn't really hurt at all. The sticks saved my life about seven times. My only other problem was a touch of exercise-induced asthma, which kept me always gasping for air at the back of the pack on the uphills.

At first I was extremely annoyed at now being the slowpoke everybody tried to chivvy into a faster pace. But finally I told them to leave me alone--I needed to breathe. One of the girls made it her project to stay with me and kept a running patter the whole way up. Together Savannah and I saw four horned toads, talked about heart-shaped rocks, music, books and how far we'd gone. She was glad of a slower pace, and I was overjoyed to have a climbing partner.

One of the fit younger leaders needlessly came back for me, tried to take my pack, and in the end tried to offer me a ride from the trail head into camp. No dice. I was coming in under my own steam and carrying my own pack. Actually, the Lord was carrying me, and my pack was much lighter without all that water. Still a dig to my pride, but I was not "THAT" woman. At least I redeemed myself rappelling.

So instead of being the wise and all-knowing leader of girls, the Lord led me. Funny how that happens.   <=        =>


  1. Great thoughts. You gotta love girls camp. No one returns the same.

  2. Sometimes I think that things like girls camp and especially trek do so much more for the adults than they do for the youth. lol At least that means I'm still teachable, which is a good thing.

  3. Lovely post. Thanks for the reminders. I'm so homesick for the fresh pine-y air I can smell it. Like my (Alpine) sister says, "it's like breathing water down here!"