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WORDS OF THE LATTER RAIN

Volume 3, Issue 1, January 2010

1/25/2010

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Marcia's Musings

Ken Nix

Monday, 1/25/2010

By Marcia Smeenk

Walk in the Wilderness

To walk in the wilderness you need to take along items which meet your specific needs.  Planning ahead is imperative for a successful journey.  Survival skills which include knowledge of edible plants, berries and roots, and hunting and fishing skills could make the difference between life and death. Tools such as a knife and rope or cord should be included.  A good tent provides shelter from the wind, rain and snow, and a good sleeping bag will keep you warm on cold nights.  Good shoes, extra socks, a warm coat, rain gear, hat and gloves keep you warm and dry.  A map and compass help lead the way to your destination. Finally, possibly the most important thing is your food and water supply.   Experienced hikers advise taking more food than you think you will need.  What is your purpose for this trek?  Is it to spend time alone or with others?  Who will walk the trail with you?  Did you forget anything while planning and packing?  Will you be able to buy what you may have forgotten or will there be no stores along the way?  Did you prepare adequately?  Did you think of what could happen along the way? 

 

Some of the greatest adventures and also greatest hardships were experienced by the early explorers and by westward moving emigrants in our country.  They left behind the comforts of home and family to follow their dreams.  Some were restless, some were inspired by stories told by others, and yet some were led by their desire for riches.  Many left not knowing how long and how hard the journey would be.  Many thought they packed adequate food, supplies and clothing for the journey.  Day after day they traveled and the landscape changed from trees and green rolling hills to prairie and then to desert, opportunities to resupply became fewer and fewer.  Finally mountains appeared in the distance but took weeks to reach.  When the first hill was conquered, there were more, a seemingly never ending scene.  Threatening and warring Indians were encountered, wagons were burned, animals stolen, supplies were exhausted, and then winter came.

One classic story was that of the Donner Party who travelled from Illinois to California in 1846. Catastrophe stuck when the party became stranded when deep snow prevented their passage across a final mountain pass.  Deviation from a well known route had cost them precious time and supplies. Their planned four month journey during the warmer months was in its eighth month when it came to a halt that late November.    Food ran out and in spite of a series of rescue efforts, 41 of the 81 people stranded perished.  They had been defeated by the weather, an enemy they had not anticipated when their plans were made.

 

This is the time for us to be sure we have what we need to go forth and finish our journey.  We do not have time to try out the secondary routes.  We cannot allow ourselves to be persuaded to deviate from our path. We must use the perfect compass to stay on track. We do not have time to unnecessarily delay. We need to learn the power of light.  It is practice time.  We still have our warm homes and beds to return to each night.  Practice bringing more light to others.   The fruits are light and they are your supplies and tools for this journey.  Have your supplies in order and know how to replenish them.  Take the light with you and plenty of oil.  The bridegroom is coming and when he does, he will not wait for you to go out to buy more (Matt. 25:1-10).  If you are prepared for a long journey, and find it to be short, praise God for his mercy and rejoice!

 

 

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