Walking in the River


Mr. Wonderful in the Muddy Narrows


One of the hikes that we took while we were on vacation was called The Narrows and it was in Zion National Park. The 1st mile of the hike is on a paved sidewalk and the rest of the hike is in the river. The particular section that we ventured out on was an up and back. You go up the river as far as you want and then you turn around and come back.

I was a touch on the nervous side as hiking in a river when you are not at your normal physical level is a challenge in and of itself. Add two kids and the previous nights flash flood, and well, it put me on edge.The park ranger didn’t help when she told me that two people had broken their legs on that hike the day before.

So we headed off on our adventure and noted that with the previous evenings flash flood that the river was so cloudy with mud that you couldn’t see the bottom. So now on top of everything else we are going to have to go by feel. This meant tripping over rocks, sinking in mud and having no real sense of security with each step that you take. The kids of course did great. They didn’t care that they couldn’t see the bottom, they just forged ahead like it was all perfectly normal. I am usually pretty tough when it comes to being adventurous, okay, semi tough. But right now I am feeling a bit more vulnerable than normal. Even so I didn’t want to miss out on the adventure,  so I clung to Mr. Wonderful for dear life and stepped into the river and walked.


And wow was I not disappointed! The views within that canyon were magnificient and the rock formations, breathtaking. I got to watch our son begin to live out his namesake, Jim Bridger, by forging ahead and blazing the trail before us. As well as see our daughter find photographic moments and do daring things to make those moments happen.

I would have missed out on all of this had I chose to play it safe. Had I not stepped into the river or chose to cling to the side in fear of something bad happening. It’s easy to shut down and want to play it safe after you have walked through something very difficult. We can trick ourselves into thinking that if we don’t step out then nothing bad will happen. The reality is that bad stuff happens whether you step our or not. So step in the river, grab on to someone or something that you trust and go for it. You miss out on so much life by playing it safe or being fearful of what’s around the next corner.IMG_9281a


I head up to Eugene in about an hour or so to begin my second week of radiation. The 1st week ended well and I got to be here for my kids first day of school. I am so very grateful for that.

Yesterday, a friend from our days in Eugene was killed in a plane crash.  He was with his grandpa and they had flown together about a gazillion times. My friend’s wife Carri is near and dear to my heart as we have been friends for a very long time. The river is muddy again and I can’t see the bottom. I can stay on the sidelines and claim my own issues and play it safe or I can grab my Savior’s hand and step into the river and walk. Because I am me, I know I will trip over some rocks and get stuck in the mud, but I also know that God is a God of miracles, grace, peace, healing and blessings. Beauty will rise out of this horror, I don’t know when or how but if I stay on the riverbank then I will miss the opportunity to love which is the greatest opportunity of all.

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  1. As always, well said. Love you.

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