Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Adventures that Shouldn't be Called "Adventures," but "Life"

A bit of background: I took a job this summer as a backpacking guide at Sky Ranch at Ute Trail outside of Lake City, CO. I know what you're thinking: "Mondo, you don't know how to be a backpacking guide." True as that may be, I'm diving in head first. And, on that point, the folks that hired me are the villains if it all goes south and some unsuspecting high school kid doesn't make it back with all of his fingers. Here's to that not happening.
But, last weekend, I traveled out to mighty Frontier Ranch to take part in a two day training session in what they call "soft skills:" the leadership/relational part of what we will be doing on trail. I went into last weekend without really knowing what I was getting myself into. I like mountain people. I like the understanding and appreciation for life and creation and beauty that many of them seem to carry around with them. Christian mountain people seem all the more exciting to me; combining a love of creation with a desire and pension for community. The latter is a thing that I have been confronted with of late, realizing that my survival in this Atlanta/life experiment depends largely on my ability to participate in Christian community. I've felt the pull to go out and actively seek out this community; to develop and sustain deep-rooted and genuine relationships with other people. I spent last weekend getting to know my community for the summer. There are five other guides, three of which are on their second year. I loved it. In the three days that we knew each other, we all shared detailed insight into who we are. We talked about life and love and pain and Jesus and truth. We walked through things over the course of just one weekend. It was refreshing and beautiful. I am so excited to be a part of this thing that God is doing in the mountains of Colorado. I am so excited to be doing it all alongside solid folks that love Jesus and are fighting to bring about the Kingdom in their lives. I am so excited to be walking with such beautiful people, and to be part of something huge: Jesus' unfinished work among his children on the trails of the San Juan mountains. And helping trail-bound kids to keep all of their fingers.