Patience & How the Kayaking Trip Finished

One of my favorite places to kayak, canoe or tube is the Shenandoah River.  The landscape is stunning, and you often come around one of the many turns to see a mountain looking down on you.  This picture (above)  was taken by me (or Susan) on one of our many adventures there.

Yesterday at PCC, I told a story about a kayaking trip we recently went on with four of our closest friends, Jeff & Lanette Boggess and Hank & Donna Brooks.  Jeff had 6 kayaks loaded on his truck and trailer.  My car was the ‘getaway’ vehicle.  We parked my car where we would end up, then we all rode in Jeff’s truck to where we put in.  If you’ve never done this, it’s really not complicated.   You just have to have a vehicle at both locations.

But when we got out of Jeff’s truck, I couldn’t figure out where to put the key to my car.  I didn’t bring a water-tight bag with me.  While I was trying to figure out what to do, Hank, says, “Just put it here in my shoe.  I’ll leave it in Jeff’s truck.  It’ll be safe here.”  It never crossed my mind that the whole point was for me to actually have the key with me when we got to my car!  So, I put the key in Hank’s shoe, we locked the truck and shoved off.

About half an hour and a mile & a half later, my brain turned on.  The peaceful river gave way to the horrifying realization that we had no way to get back to Jeff’s truck.  I caught up to Jeff and told him what I’d done.  “Do you think I can row back to your truck and get the key?” I asked.  “No way,” he immediately said, “we’ve already been through two sets of rapids.  You’d never get back, and if you did it would take hours.”

Somehow, everyone in the group seemed to be at peace about the whole thing.  They knew that somehow it would work itself out.  Meanwhile, I was a wreck.  I just knew I had stranded my friends in the wilderness, where we would probably never be seen again.  We’d have to make due, like the early settlers did, and live off the land.  Maybe they’d find our remains a hundred years from now.

Someone in our group said, “We’ll just call an Uber.”   I began to panic.  “An UBER??  We’re in the middle of NOWHERE!  They don’t have Uber out here!”

Still, I was the only one worried.  And worry I did.  My lack of trust that God was bigger than my transportation debacle is embarrassing, frankly.  Here’s what happened:

We get to our destination, where my car is.  Jeff walks up to the parking area, and there’s a guy from AAA there helping someone with their car!  Jeff explains the situation and tells they guy where the truck is (where my key was!), and the guy says, “I have to drive right past there on the way to my next stop.”  He didn’t even want any money to take us there! (but we gave him some anyway).

I let my impatience mess up my whole day.  But it was a valuable lesson to learn:  We should trust God for the future instead of trying to control it.

5 Responses to “Patience & How the Kayaking Trip Finished”

  1. Rosa Noyes

    I think many of us went home wondering how your trip ended, and I expect something similar has happened to many who heard your story. My hus band and I always take home something to chew on from your wonderful messages. You have a God given talent.

    • Brian

      Thanks Rosa! I’m grateful for your encouragement!

      • Kathy Babbitt

        Thanks so much for “the rest of the story”
        Always love your messages!

  2. Pam

    Pastor Brian, thanks for letting us know what happened and also for the reminder to trust God.

  3. Gayle Byers

    Pastor Brian, I loved your message yesterday and yes I was wondering how your story ended. It is amazing when we are stuck or worried about something that we tend to take it away from God and put it into our own hands and not trust him. I guess it can also happen when your worried about a family member as well and not give it to God to handle but it is very hard to do you know. It happened to me today and at the end they were safe at home and this feeling came over me saying you need to let it go and let me take it. At the time I had no patience left in me until I got the phone call. We need to trust him and wait on him and he will take care of everything and us. Thank you so much for teaching me the things you do with your sermons.


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