"The Hub" and I love camping.
We haven't gone for a while, but still…I hear those tents and campfires calling.
A camping trip takes a lot of planning. Especially if you're *tent-camping* – because you know all those amenities that you find in an RV? Well, they don't exist in a tent!
You've got to take your clothes, your bedding, your food, your lighting, your tools and supplies…oh yeah, and the tent.
"The Hub" has been known to start packing days before we leave on a trip. He carefully lays out everything, just to make sure (and double-sure) that we indeed have everything we're going to need out in the wilds!
Then we find a way to *squish-pack* all of our stuff into the car. It's usually a very tight squeeze. Especially when we add the first few days' worth of firewood! (I am a master squish-packer, by the way). I really could fit 100 clowns into a circus car, or 30 people into a phone booth, or maybe even find a way to stuff my body into a Spanx…
The next step is the long, long drive to the campground. That journey is an adventure it itself at times. Crazy beautiful scenery, unfamiliar back-roads, and wide open spaces.
But, after the arrival, the most important step occurs.
Picking the campsite.
"The Hub" is not a fan of neighbors. He likes to be as isolated as possible. Gotta be honest, I agree with him. After all, for us camping is all about the peace and quiet!
We've had really good luck with campsites.
Only had a few bad experiences. Like the one time we got the last campsite available on the first night of a multiple-day trip – the site next to a group of teenagers, loud and drinking teenagers. Yeah, not much sleep that night.
Or how about the time we were nearly eaten alive by an onslaught of marauding mutant mosquitoes? Only to be awakened in the middle of the night when a huge tree came crashing down, just a few sites away…(can you say "TIMBER!!")
Or the time "The Hub" literally lifted up our tent and walked through the campground to a new site because we couldn't handle the crying toddler, the barking dog, and the loud parents who moved in right next door?
Yeah, sometimes it happens.
But, campsite selection is important, vital, crucial to what your attitude is going to be, and whether you're going to enjoy your stay or be miserable.
So, where am I going with this?
Well, I was having a conversation with my sister the other day. We were talking about the last six weeks since my father died. There's just been an incredible amount of things to do, situations to work out – and of course, the in's and out's and up's and down's of all our feelings.
I shared with her, as I did with all of you last week, that I've really been struggling to stay on top of it all. I've been struggling to find joy.
And then, she talked to me about camping. (My sister loves camping, too)
She reminded me of the whole process of picking out that all-important campsite.
She asked me, "Sharon, where do you go? Do you go to a crummy site, that's dirty and dingy and depressing?"
(Um, no, I think to myself).
"No, you look for the site with the best view, that's all clean and comfortable, right?"
(Yup, I do).
"And why do you do that?"
I answered her, "Because that's where everything feels good. My attitude is better, and I'm happy and at peace."
"Exactly," she said. "So the same thing is true right now with your feelings. Where do you want to camp?"
You know, what she said stopped me then, and it's still got me pondering.
Where am I camping?
The enemy would like me to camp at the worst site in the worst campground.
That's because he’s the "Camp Host" there.
He loves torturing visitors. He enjoys throwing trash all over. He thinks it's fun to steal their firewood, leaving them out in the cold. He hysterically delights in making lots of noise, and scaring campers with weird sounds in the middle of the night.
Why would I want to stay there?
In real life, it would be ridiculous to *set up camp* in such an area.
Why do I do it in my heart?
My sister's wise words were so true, and I've thought about them a lot.
Where am I camping out?
And, if I'm in the wrong place, I have a choice.
I. CAN. MOVE.
So yeah, I'm dealing with a lot of stuff right now. And, that's OK. I'm giving myself some grace for a very stressful last few months, and especially the last few weeks.
But, in spite of all the legitimate reasons I might be feeling what I'm feeling, I have still found myself sitting in a crummy campsite.
Setting up my tent, moving in, looking at the trash, shivering in the cold, trying to close my ears to all the noise, and jumping at scary sounds.
And then, there's the "Camp Host" to deal with…
My sister pointed out a grand truth that I sometimes lose sight of – I HAVE A CHOICE.
I don't have to stay here. I can move.
I can see Jesus approaching me…as I sit huddled in my misery.
"Dear Sharon, come follow Me. There is beauty just over here, by the green pastures and the still waters. Here will be peace and quiet…"
I will move to Your beauty, and I will stay camped there.
Search for peace,
and work to maintain it.
"Whenever the cloud lifted from over the sacred tent, the people of Israel would break camp and follow it. And wherever the cloud settled, the people of Israel would set up camp. In this way, they traveled and camped at the LORD's command wherever he told them to go." (Numbers 9:17-18, NLT)
So, where are you camped out today?
Linked today with:
Joan at SHARING HIS BEAUTY
Michelle at HEAR IT ON SUNDAY, USE IT ON MONDAY
Laura at PLAYDATES WITH GOD
Hazel at TELL ME A TRUE STORY
Jen at SOLI DEO GLORIA
Jen at UNITE
Tracy at WINSOME WEDNESDAY
Rosilind at A LITTLE R & R WEDNESDAYS
Judith at WHOLEHEARTED WEDNESDAYS
Kasey at WALKING REDEEMED
Beth at THREE WORD WEDNESDAY
Rachel at WHIMSICAL WEDNESDAY
Jenifer at WORD FILLED WEDNESDAY
Lyli at THOUGHT-PROVOKING THURSDAY
Bonnie at FAITH BARISTA JAM
Laura at FAITH FILLED FRIDAY
Wanda at THE FRIDAY FIVE
Mel at ESSENTIAL FRIDAYS
Charlotte at SPIRITUAL SUNDAYS
Barbie at WEEKEND BREW
Sandy at STILL SATURDAY
Salina at HEART REFLECTED
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