If you are starting to read this and didn't read my first post, read it and then return to this one. Dinner was phenomenal! But onto better things...Trac II Bikes posed as a huge challenge in that not only was the length of the trip an obstacle that had to be overcome, but a 9-mile, gravel uphill was also on the agenda. The first day we set out to do 63 miles. At the end of that day my butt was pretty sore but no sweat. I think I consumed approximately 4000 calories which included 4 Snickers Bars and 7 bananas (among other things). The following morning we woke up, ate breakfast and then headed out beginning with the 9-mile uphill that everyone referred to as "Misery Hill". However, God brought to my mind the scripture "Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord? He who has clean hands and a pure heart." Ha---but what was funny about this was by mile #4 I was beginning to sarcastically question in my head: "maybe I don't have clean hands and a pure heart cause I am definitely struggling with this hill" This was really tough in that it took a total of 5 1/2 hours for our entire team to complete the 9-mile stretch. I was to the point where I was praying for God to give me a "gradual graded hill" rather than the steep one that I was currently pedaling. Through it all God showed himself strong. More than anything he taught and reemphasized that my calling is to "come and die to myself" and depend on him for absolute certainty and strength. I'm constantly amazed by His grace and perhaps one thing He has continually taught me out here is that He wants me to be absolutely convinced of his love for me just as Paul said he was convinced that "neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor death, nor anything in all creation can separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus."
Fortunately, there were only 5 "crash and burn" incidents throughout the entire trip, one of which occurred because a bear ran out in front of this tiny 15-year old girl. The Pacific coast was incredible and the Redwood Forest was gigantic.
God is teaching me:
*He is so infinitely wise and in complete control!
*The freedom that is in Him.
*That I absolutely and undoubtedly need Him...His love is better than life!
*I'm learning what true intercession is and what it means to intercede for others.
More of what God is doing here at the ranch:
* A girl on my Trac II team who was struggling with depression and cutting herself experienced the freedom that is in Christ this week---I can't tell you how transformational the love of God is!
*We are expecting 27 Israeli students to take part in the second session of Second Wind in two weeks.
*God is restoring the hearts of children to their parents and parents to their children as is stated in Malachi.
I'm having a ball and I appreciate your prayers and mail...thanks