August 10, that will be 8 years as Expedition Director at Jaywalker Lodge. That’s not bad for a guy who was ready to resign less than 5 hours into my first expedition. I vividly remember walking up to my tent in the evening, conversing with God about what a gigantic mistake I had made taking this job, then contemplating how I would break this prophetic news to my wife.
Thankfully God is a transformational God, and resignation never took place. You see God is in the business of taking what each of us has to offer and, if we are willing, transforming our lives in ways we could not imagine. The past 8 years have been monumentally transformational for me and I am eternally grateful.
End of blog post, no way, I am just getting started.
Why such deep, introspective thoughts? Simple, I spent last Thursday with 5 Lodge clients dragging 25 foot logs through the woods. What could cause more introspection and waxing philosophical than lumberjacking?
Our mission for the day was to help build 2 footbridges in Rifle Mountain Park. Sounds pretty simple until you get to the part that involves getting the logs to the actual bridge sites. These weren’t little saplings, we were hunting for big boy logs, preferably recently deceased and reasonably close to the road.
The crew I had with me that day was eager and optimistic and I kept thinking these guys are nuts if they think we can move a log that big over the river and through the woods to the new bridge site. But time and time again, 6 times to be exact, we somehow managed to move these 25+ foot logs down the hills and onto a trailer.
No paths to follow, this was bushwhacking with several hundred pounds of wood in tow, using gravity as our friend. The logs and each of us took a few dings and scratches along the way but ultimately, after 8 hours of hard labor, we were able to get each log in its place to construct two very sweet footbridges.
As I drove the guys back to the Lodge that evening the thought of transformation jumped into my head. I thought about how we took these individual logs in a random forest, removed them from their familiar surroundings, drug them through some thorns, rocks and mud, transported them on a trailer, gave them a new home and now they have a new purpose.
They are not shiny and perfect, far from it; rather they are beat up, weathered, bark peeling to expose some wounds, curved and bent a bit, not perfect at all. But what they are is perfectly placed to do what is needed at this time in that place.
Can’t life be similar for each of us?
If we allow God to transform us, He may very well do those same things. We may be uprooted, cut off from our “comfortable” surroundings, drug through the mud, have some wounds exposed, our imperfections may be on display and we may not look “perfect” to the world. That is a vulnerable spot to reside. But when we allow ourselves to be at that point of vulnerability, I believe God meets us and begins transforming us, perfectly placing us where we need to be at the appointed time. Be eternally grateful for the transformation to date and get ready for the next chapter.
As Chief Executive Officer Bill provides leadership and manage all day-to-day operations of Jaywalker Lodge, an extended care residential addiction treatment program for adult men.