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Tag Archives: Appalachian Trail

Praising God in the Storm #praiseHiminthestorm

StormThen the Lord spoke to Job out of the storm…
Job 40:6

From time to time I try to get away to the wilderness and get alone with God.  A couple of weeks ago I felt a prompting of the Spirit, so I spent three days hiking on the Appalachian Trail in New Hampshire.  I’m glad that I did.

The presence of the Lord was very real during that trip.  I had some great prayer times with Him.  But there is one thing that happened that I want to share in this post.

My plan was to start out early and park my car at the ending point of the hike.  I had made arrangements with a taxi company to meet me there and take me to where I was to start.  As I sat in my car, waiting for the cab to arrive, it started to lightly drizzle.

According to the weather, it was only a 20% chance of rain first thing in the morning, then clear skies later.  Since there was no cell phone reception to call off the taxi, and I figured it would clear up soon, I decided to go forward with my hiking plans.

I put on my rain gear and took the taxi to the start of my hike.  It started off fine.  Under the cover of the forest, the slight rain didn’t even make it down to where I was walking.

However, the further I hiked up the mountain, the less cover there was.  Then it happened – the sky opened up and I found myself in a torrential downpour.  I had to scramble across slippery rocks, on the edge of a cliff, in the rain.

At one point the trees cleared for a bit giving me an incredible view.  (That’s the picture I took at the top of this post.)  It was at that moment that the Spirit of the Lord became wonderfully real to me.  I had no choice but to stop, right where I was and worship God.

As I looked around, standing on the rocks on the side of a mountain, dripping wet in a rainstorm, I had the funniest thought.  I told the Lord, “God, You even make rainstorms magnificent!”

It was an experience to remember.  The sound of the rain and wind in the mountains.  The sight of the clouds racing past me as I stood level with them.  The expanse of the mountains and trees around me.

It all combined to inspire awe toward my Creator.  I realized in that moment that I was experiencing something that few people ever will.  Actually, few people would ever choose to be there!

In our Christian walk, if you desire to do great things for God then you will go through a spiritual storm.  But in the middle of that challenge, know that the Holy Spirit is with you.  If you turn the downpour into a chance to praise God, you’ll know the wonder of His presence with you.

Questions: Are you going through a spiritual battle at this time?  Will you choose to give God praise during the tough times?

© Nick Zaccardi 2013

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Inner Strength

Ephesians 3:16
I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being.

Now that we are in the Spring season, my mind starts to think about hiking.  I love to get out and walk the Appalachian Trail.  In order to be ready, I have been either walking or riding my bike each morning.  I want to strengthen those lazy winter muscles.

Strength is a necessary part of the outdoors experience.  When my wife and I started to add children to our family we stopped hiking because of the limited time we had.  Since I have started back up again I have lost 30 pounds.  (Pounds that I had “found” up till that time!)

I can tell you by experience that out of shape people cannot enjoy hiking as fully as those used to the rigors of trail life.  I remember well the pain in my legs and back when I first started.  I had to stop every few feet while going uphill, just to breathe.  Thank God, I am starting to get in shape again!

More important than physical condition, however, is the shape of your inner being.  The spiritual trail you are on is far tougher than any wilderness trail.  God wants to strengthen you for that journey.

It is going to take quality time spent in the presence of the Lord.  That is why your time in the presence of the Lord is so beneficial.  It builds you up internally.  To do this you must free yourself from distractions so that you can concentrate on Christ.

Let Him strengthen you today.  Spend time before Him just drinking in His Spirit.  Take the time necessary so that your inner man is ready for the road ahead, no matter how rough the path.

 
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Posted by on May 26, 2012 in Daily Thoughts

 

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