I find the trail by riding it, then I look back and discover a path.
There’s a lot of recent conversation about “Never Forget.” More important, I think, to remember.
Remember acts as a sort of curator, sorting, cataloging, and displaying the past. Remember seeks patterns and distills lessons. Remember allows us the perspective of time to separate wheat from chaff and organize an otherwise chaotic jumble of events.
Remember releases us to view people and events with grace and forgiveness.
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Day 2 of the Mississippi River Ride took us to the Paul Bunyan Trail. We knew nothing about this amazing gem until the previous day. A reporter’s offhand comment lead us to the trailhead and some incredible days of riding.
I wrote about the trail the next day and posted the video below. It’s a great memory. But as I looked back and remembered, as I wrote the manuscript for RICH’S RIDE a few months later, I discovered deeper, richer significance. The trail was more than a nice way to ride for a few days.
Turns out that beginning this adventure into the unknown was more stressful than either of us realized at the time. We were running on adrenaline that was about to fade and badly needed the peace and tranquility of this unexpected trail.
The New Testament Greek word teleios, translated “perfect,” means “full, needing nothing for completeness.” Teleios implies being what’s intended and completely fulfilling a purpose. As a way of getting my journey off to a positive, inspiring beginning, the Paul Bunyan Trail left absolutely nothing to be desired. It was perfect.
That’s how God’s provision so frequently works. When I step out in faith and follow the dream, He gives me what I didn’t even know what I needed.
I knew we needed a route. I didn’t know we needed exactly what this beautiful path through the pristine north woods would provide.
The Paul Bunyan Trail was perfect. I only discovered that by riding the trail and then looking back.
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Let’s remember. Let’s tell our stories in ways that build community and demonstrate grace. Hope looks back at promises kept and looks forward with confidence.
Let’s do our best to assure that remember is a tool for discovering hope and never an excuse for dragging ourselves or others over old speed bumps.
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Interested in a book about this amazing journey? Check out: RICH’S RIDE: Hope Changes What’s Possible
Take a ride along the Paul Bunyan Trail: