Thursday, February 26, 2015

The Klondike Derby, February 20&21, 2015

Eighteen Scouts slept in their snow shelters last Friday night up at the Anthony Lakes area of NE Oregon.  Their gear was appropriate to the weather conditions--18 degrees and light snow--so they enjoyed a comfortable night.  Many of these boys were barely eleven years old, yet their enthusiasm lasted the entire time, and they were most proud of their accomplishment. And I, at the other end of the age spectrum, enjoyed sleeping out in a tree well inside a bivy sack, underneath the tree boughs.

Saturday morning they competed in Scout skill events, as well as fun challenges based on a medieval knight theme--a catapult to knock over buckets, a jousting where they held a long light pole to thrust through a small hole as they were being pushed on a sledge, a bridge to knock their opponent off of.

We had enough scouts for three patrols.  One patrol finished first, so naturally there was extra excitement. These opportunities are unique skill and confidence builders--lessons and memories to last a  lifetime.

My sleeping "quarters"

Jousting target

Sunday, February 22, 2015

What is the basis of our security?

"What is the basis of our security? When we start thinking about that question, we may give many answers: success, money, friends, property, popularity, family, connections, insurance, and so on. We may not always think that any of these forms the basis of our security, but our actions or feelings may tell us otherwise. When we start losing our money, our friends, or our popularity, our anxiety often reveals how deeply our sense of security is rooted in these things.

A spiritual life is a life in which our security is based not in any created things, good as they may be, but in God, who is everlasting love. We probably will never be completely free from our attachment to the temporal world, but if we want to live in that world in a truly free way, we'd better not belong to it. "You cannot be the slave both of God and of money" (Luke 16:13)." Henri Nouwen

Sperry_Chalet, Glacier_National_Park


Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Snow Shelter construction

BSA Troop 514 spent this past Saturday and Monday constructing snow shelters at Mud Lake, opposite the ski area at Anthony Lake, OR. We had 16 Scouts hard at work on both days.  Many of them had just joined the troop in January, and were only fifth graders, but their enthusiasm, stamina and work ethic was outstanding.  The snow was not too deep, so we had to forgo building our usual snow caves.  Instead we made trenches with sleeping platforms and covered the trenches with tarps.  So, we are protected from the weather, but need to dress warmly for the cold. We will sleep in them this Friday night, and then participate in the annual Klondike Derby on Saturday.

Troop 514

Snow shelter Anthony Lake

Troop 514

Sunday, February 15, 2015

the things we cannot see will last forever

"That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day.  For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!  So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.”  2 Corinthians 4:16-18

The sunrise image below of the sports facility at Eastern Oregon University is a definite stretch, but I thought, wow, God’s light in the darkness, whether in a sunrise or in a light shining in the darkness, does last forever.  The scene below will disappear, and yet—What a wonderful reminder Paul gives us that there is so much more beyond the temporary, transient lives we live now. I pray we do recognize  our spirits are being renewed daily!

Eastern Oregon University, Quinn Coliseum

Lake McDonald from Sperry Chalet, Glacier National Park

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Time in prayer

Long ago, through prayer, I was blessed with a miraculous, intense healing of mind, body, and soul. As I have prayed the years since, I cannot specifically claim that “I” have caused anything equally miraculous to happen. I do know that I find incredible peace and rest when I let go of my “chattering voices” and in stillness, feel the incredible connections with God and His Creation.  And I do accept what Oswald Chambers writes: “The purpose of prayer is that we get ahold of God, not of the ‘answer.”

“God will probably not be interested in how many things we included in our day, but how much of our day included Him.” All Zobe-Nolan

Zumwalt_Prairie, Wallowa_Mts

White_Island, Bay_of Plenty_NZ