Time Rich. It’s Weird.

My Camp Spot

I went beach camping most this past week.  It wasn’t until the 3rd afternoon I finally got bored.  Not miserable bored… just relaxed bored.  The picture above shows one of the spots I camped at.  I set my tent up underneath the shade of those Kansas Palm Trees (aka Cottonwoods).

Now that I have so much time I don’t feel I have any excuse for getting stressed.  This for me is the hardest thing to get used to: slowing down. I usually run around half-frazzled because I’ve scheduled too much to do in a day. Now if I run around half-frazzled it’s kinda ridiculous because I’ve got nothing going. It’s made me stop and think about why I’m ever anxoius in the first place.

For instance, I was at Aldi’s the other day… and let me first preface this story by saying I don’t usually shop at Aldi’s because it’s not convenient.  However, with all my free time I figure there’s no reason to not buy stuff cheaper just because it’s not as fast.

So anyways, at Aldi’s I’m in the checkout line and remember they only accept cash (or debit cards) which I have neither.  Therefore I have to leave the store and make a run over to the bank to get cash.  Then when I come back to Aldi’s now the checkout lines (of which there are only two) are sooo long I have to literally wait forever.  Normally this would have irritated me and this time was no exception.  However, I did remind myself there was nothing I had to do the entire day so there was zero rush, I could take my time.

Of course Jesus never was in a rush, something I’ve always found interesting.  Presumably he was never anxious either.  He said we are not to worry.  In fact, in the Sermon on the Mount Jesus said not to worry three times. 

I tend to either worry too much or too little. Lately I’ve worried so little about my future I’m in danger of becoming unproductive. Hence this blog post: I felt a need to create something.

The thought above about Jesus saying not to worry 3 times reminded me about how I’ve been noticing the number 3 in the Bible of late.  I find numbers in the Bible interesting and think they sometimes have significance, though not always of course. 

The number 3 can mean many things in the Bible, but in general it can be noted as a number of completeness or finality.  I’ve noticed that number used quite a bit in the end section of Mark I’m currently studying.  Whether it means anything or not… you can form your own opinion. Here are the instances I’ve noticed.

    Sailing With Joe

    The clip below and picture above were both taken Monday, June 27th when Joe came out to help me enjoy the evening while I was camping.

Labor Day: Weather & Prayer

Labor Day Forecast 2009

Earlier this week, a friend of mine and I specifically prayed it wouldn’t rain over Labor Day. At the time we prayed, the weather forecasters were predicting scattered thunderstorms all weekend.

We wanted to take a couple guys out camping on my big boat (before it sells) Sunday night and couldn’t do that if there was any chance of lightning. Now, I know it’s debatable whether we should pray for “luxury wants” like good weather for yachting when there are other people in the world with real needs (such as food because they are starving). But we did anyways.

Sooo, today is Saturday… and guess what? All predictions for rain are gone! In fact, I just saw an article in our local paper stating the weather this Labor Day is shaping up to be exceptionally ideal.

So God answered our prayer with a “yes.” Here are some excerpts from the article:

“In years to come, camping lovers and local lake managers may look back at 2009 as the year Labor Day weekend was as good as it gets…”

“[This weekend will be] ideal weather for camping, with cool nights and warm, dry days. Lakes at good levels. Lush grounds.”

“It’s perfect camping weather. You can’t beat it,” Lake Afton park manager Mark Sroufe said.

And meteorologist Chris Jakub from the National Weather Service had this to say,“It’s pretty ideal, really.”

Arizona Desert

Southwest from out My Car Window
The American Southwest from out My Car Window

Arizona. Phoenix. Hot. Very hot. I just checked the temperature: 101 degrees.

Fortunately our car has a strong air conditioner. Even though the air temperature in the vehicle is cool, my skin still feels like it is crawling. It must be the radiant heat. UV rays. My face feels flushed and my arms are becoming sun burnt.

Interestingly, many businesses here are named after something related with the sun. I saw a Sun Mart gas station. Phoenix is in the Sun Valley. T-Shirts in the airport souvenir shops had emblems of the sun on them. Including the one I bought. Which I’m currently wearing. Which the back of is already soaked with sweat.

So how about the scenery? We’ve been driving West from Phoenix several hours now and Luke just commented that it was kind of demoralizing. Mile after mile of sage brush, dirt, and cactus. Did I mention the sun?

This would be a bad place to have car problems. Fortunately every mile along the side of the highway are nifty kiosk “call boxes”. I have never seen these before.

For some reason – which I can’t seem to recall at the present moment – we had previously made plans to spend tonight tent camping in this forbidding waste land. Joshua Tree National Park had sounded like a quaint and attractive place to camp. At least from the comfort of my air conditioned apartment. The rules are that primitive camping is allowed so long as the brave soul is at least one mile from any roads or trails. Peering out the dust tinted window I wonder if walking one mile from my vehicle into this cauldron of desolation is somehow ominously synonymous to a death wish.

Update #1: Later

yeah, we survived

Update #2: October 2010

This poor hiker got lost in Joshua Tree Park for 6 days, but fortunately was finally rescued.

However, this hiker from Georgia did not make it. He went to Josua Tree hiking alone and never came back… His car was found, but he never was.