Welcome

Welcome to the SOON-TO-BE official website of Going The Distance Adventure Ministry! Follow our God-awesome mission trips, adventure trips, retreats, & day trips, as well as all the behind-the-scenes efforts & prayer that goes into this exciting ministry. Our greatest hope is that you know Jesus as your Lord, Savior & Best Friend and we hope that God uses this ministry to spur you on in the faith... and we hope to see you on a GTD Event real soon!! God bless <><

Image (Love'n Life)

Image (Love'n Life)

Bill Me Later

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Martha, Mary, and FUMCO

We had a fantastic time with the HS youth group from First United Methodist Church of Oviedo (FUMCO) during our camping retreat this past weekend! We were in DeLand, FL and the weather was PERFECT!! We camped out, made smores, played games, kayaked, spent quality with God, enjoyed the campfire, & watched an outdoor movie. It was wonderful!

Retreats are always a great opportunity to unplug from technology & distractions and plug into God. One of the Bible passages we focused on was the story of Martha & Mary in Luke 10. Martha invited Jesus into her home, but got distracted by serving. While Mary enjoyed fellowship with Jesus and focused on Him while sitting. Martha got upset at Mary, but Jesus affirmed that Mary had actually chosen what is better. Often times it is easy to get distracted from spending time with God by actually getting too busy in our acts of service for God. In those times, ministry actually gets in the way of intimacy with God. We must constantly be reminded that working for God is never a substitute for spending time with God no more than working to support a family replaces spending time with our family. It's all about relationship. Service should RESULT from our relationship with Jesus, not REPLACE our relationship with Jesus. Sitting is better than serving; sitting precedes serving. We can't adequately serve until we have sufficiently sat.

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Luke 10:38-42

As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!”

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed — or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”
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Saturday, April 12, 2014

Be Still


There is no better place to draw close to God than in his creation. It's a beautiful morning for a weekend retreat! 

To learn more about how you can join us on our next event, go to www.goingthedistance.org

Friday, April 11, 2014

LIQUID IS SOLD OUT!

LIQUID IS ALL BOOKED UP!!
NO MORE CANOEING SPOTS AVAILABLE!!
LIQUID IS FULL!!

Thanks for the overwhelming & quick response people. We look foward to a great trip next weekend. We will contact those who registered on Monday (after our youth retreat) =)

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Only 10 LIQUID Spots Remain!

QUICK LIQUID UPDATE: We have 20 people registered for our free canoeing trip on April 19th. Only 10 spots remain!!

GTD will be hosting a retreat this weekend in DeLand and unable to monitor the registration forms until we return on Monday. As soon as we get back we will update the headcount.

Liquid details & registration


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Thursday, April 10, 2014

Packed

All packed up and ready to leave tmw morning for our annual retreat with FUMCO =)

FUMCO Retreat This Weekend!!

Packing up for our annual retreat with the high school youth group from First United Methodist Church of Oviedo!! Heading to DeLand tmw. Love these guys!! =)

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

How Does GTD Celebrate 18 Years of Ministry? WITH A FREE LIQUID CANOE TRIP!!

FREE GTD CANOE TRIP!!!

In celebration of 18 years of ministry GTD is giving away 30 FREE canoeing spots on our annual Liquid Canoeing Trip scheduled for Saturday April 19, 2014. No Tricks! No Gimmicks! It's a small way we can say "Thank You" to our loyal participants. All you have to do is register online before we run out of space. And this event includes lunch!! Come play with GTD as we enjoy God's amazing creation and celebrate another year of ministry =). Spots go fast so register on our LIQUID link right now!

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Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Need A Power Boost?

Spending quality time reading the Bible & talking to God ("prayer") is like a supernatural Vitamin B12 shot! There is no better way to start the day!! I would wish it upon everyone =)   - DUG <><


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Monday, April 7, 2014

The 10 (or more) Essentials

I love playing with outdoor gear. This morning I'm repacking a couple of CamelBaks with "The 10 Essentials" for survival. Because there are actually more than 10 items recommended for "The 10 Essentials" I now refer to these survival "must haves" as "The Crucial Essentials". They include things like water, food, fire starter, water purification, first aid, signaling devices, paracord, knife, flashlight, sunscreen, insect repellant, etc, etc. They are the things you will wish you had if you get lost in the wilderness. In addition, it helps to have mental toughness & the know-how to use these items packed in a seperate pack... your "Brain Pack". At GTD we supply our guides with many of these items. That's why you see so much gear in the picture. I'm also doing inventory. I love this stuff =)

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Beach Day with The DOC Ladies

It was a PERFECT day to be at the beach and we loved every minute that we got to spend with the ladies from DOC Church of St Pete!! GTD was honored to host a Beach Day full of fun games & challenges for this wonderful group of Godly gals

"...but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment." 1 Timothy 6:17

I love that we have a God who wants us to enjoy everything that He has provided.

Looking for a great church in downtown St Pete... Learn more about The DOC on their website.




165 pics from our Beach Day with The DOC Church of St Pete have been uploaded to GTD's Online Photo Album. Enjoy =)


Friday, March 28, 2014

LAST FEW DAYS TO SAVE $50/PERSON OFF THE GRAND CANYON TRIP!!!

LAST FEW DAYS TO SAVE $50/PERSON OFF THE GRAND CANYON TRIP!!!

The early registration discount of $649/person ends at 11:59pm March 31st. After that the cost goes up to $699/person.

I challenge you to find a 6-day planned trip to the Grand Canyon for less than GTD offers it. It's impossible!! You can't find a company that will do all that we are offering for under $2000. You couldn't put this trip together by yourself for less than we offer it! Many outfitters charge $825 just for the hikes. We offer an entire pre-planned trip for only $649!!! But that's only for a few more days!!! Then the cost goes up to $699.

AND.... GTD offers you payment plans, Bill Me Later, and referral discounts to help enable you to participate. We've made it tooooo easy for you!! Ask anyone who has come in the past and you'll find out they loved every minute of it and would highly recommend it to you. In fact, they love it so much that many people come back the next year!

Check out the details here and register today!!

LORDY LORDY, LOOK WHO'S 40!!

LORDY LORDY, LOOK WHO'S 40!! GTD's Mission Director just turned 40! We had a wonderful time celebrating Laurie's 40th birthday on Wednesday. Due to the cold, the swimming with the dolphins was postponed until next week. Instead we had a delicious vegan lunch at Leafy Greens in St Pete then spent the day at Myakka State Park in Sarasota followed by dinner at Outback. /// Turning 40 is a milestone in many people's lives. For many, it is a time to reflect as well as to look ahead. Laurie shared her thoughts about turning 40 in a post on her facebook. It's a good read and I hope it's as encouraging to you as it is to me. Enjoy! ... and Happy 40th Birthday Laurie!

"THOUGHTS ABOUT MY 40th BIRTHDAY:
I write this on the eve of my 40th Birthday and as I think of ushering in the BIG 4-0-, I can't help but thank God for the years He has given me here on this earth. I am so thankful for the love and complete forgiveness I have found in Him as my Lord and Savior. My life has been full of ups and downs, great memories, bad choices, hurtful times, I've caused hurt and been hurt, I've overcome, I've struggled through, I've found joy in the simple things and in God's amazing beauty, I've lived in abundance and I've lived in need, I've looked into the eyes of loved ones on their death beds, cried many tears, my heart has been full of joy and sadness, I've said goodbye to those I've loved, longed for those I miss, I've made new friend and lost old, I've felt confident, successful and yet insecure all at the same time, I've impacted lives of children as a teacher, volunteer and missionary and still I feel as though I've haven't quite hit my God given potential, I've been an athlete and dancer, worked in a fast food and pizza chain, been a waitress, customer service rep, bartender, teacher, secretary, bridal consultant, realtor, cheerleader, coach, missions and prosperity director and through it all the LORD has refined me, changed me, challenged me, grown me, loved me, forgiven me, helped me, inspired me, pursued me and has NEVER given up on me even at times when I've given up on myself. My life is HIS. He is my friend and my creator, the one who has made me unique in every way. He's the one who put the curl in my hair, the pigment in my skin, the smile on my face, the color brown in my eyes, a great sense of smell and hearing, given me a sensitive heart of compassion, a love for mankind and animals, he's blessed me with creativity, an eye for photography, a passion for health, a desire to help others, a sense of wonder, a love of nature and so much more. Tonight I reflect on Psalm 139 (the entire chapter is worth the read), vs 13-18:

"For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother's womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.
My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.
How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!
How vast is the sum of them! If I would count them, they are more than the sand. I awake, and I am still with you."

What beautiful thoughts! These words are a beautiful gift. I am blessed. My prayer is that all people would know and understand who God is and know Him as I do. My life has been forever changed by His love!

Happy Birthday to me! Here is to celebrating 40 years of life and for many more years to come! I look forward to seeing how God uses me in the future! Thanks for taking the time to read this, to wish me a Happy Birthday and for being a part of my journey!"  (- Laurie)

VOLUNTEER OF THE DAY!

VOLUNTEER OF THE DAY! Carson Vescovi =)

We loved having my nephew Carson over at the GTD office yesterday. He volunteered one of his spring break days and worked all day helping me build some extra storage shelves. Let me tell you, this hard working 11 year old is already skillful at building and planning. Great job Carson!  (-DUG)

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

GRUNGE Teaches A Spiritual Lesson

So how do you turn a caving trip into a spiritual lesson? Did you know that King David went "caving" prior to becoming the king? You can read all about it in 1 Samuel 24. It's a powerful story about integrity, waiting on God's timing, not prematurely taking matters into your own hands, resisting peer pressure, Godly & loving confrontation, and strategic & tactical retreating from your enemy. And it all took place in a cave and just outside of a cave. Enjoy! GRUNGE 2014 Recap =)

1 Samuel 24

JR Guide: Carson

My 11 year old nephew, Carson, did a marvelous job as our Jr Guide on the caving trip this past Saturday. This was his 5th time caving and he helped get the group geared up, he gave them tips from his past experience, and he supplied plenty of encouragement & support throughout our underground adventure. We're so proud of him =)

- DUG <><









Outrageous Time on GRUNGE!

Blessed with a tremendous time this past Saturday with some fabulous people on GTD's GRUNGE Caving Trip!! It was an outrageous adventure!

176 exciting GRUNGE Caving Trip pics have been uploaded to the GTD Online Photo Album!! Enjoy =)

Click Here To See Pics

God's Not Dead

On Friday we saw the movie "God's Not Dead"... FANTASTIC MOVIE!!! Go see it!!!! The best $10 you will ever spend. The acting in Christian movies has gotten better and better (less cheesier & less cheesier). But the story line (as always) is excellent, relevant, and well thought. LOVED IT!!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

It's A Great Day For Caving!

Caving is the one thing I said I'd never do when I got hired on with GTD and it was the first thing I ever did and now I'm here leading another trip with Doug Garner and His nephew Carson!  So glad my never turned into trying, I hate living my life in fear of things, it's not the way God intended it to be. -Laurie 


"for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control." 2 Timothy 1:7

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Our Canoe Trip With The DOC

On Saturday we had a fantastic time hosting a canoe trip for some of the men from The DOC Church of St Petersburg. It was a perfect day outside with some fun-loving Godly dudes =)

110 pics of the canoeing trek have been uploaded to the GTD Online Photo Album.

Enjoy!

Saturday, March 15, 2014

"Thritly" Renovating =)

Picking up an office sofa, chair, & filing cabinet from the thrift store for Laurie's office. We finished painting and cleaning the carpet yesterday. It's way overdue, but we finally have some time to clean-up, clean-out, & "thriftly" renovate the GTD office =)

Payment Plans Available For The Grand Canyon Trip!!

GTD's Grand Canyon Trip for only $58/mth!!

Click on this link and then scroll down to the "PAYMENT PLANS AVAILABLE" section for more details.

RECAP PICS: Corkscrew Lowering Rescue


During last weekend's event the men learned how to rescue someone from a tall building. Many of the techniques used by firefighters can be summed up with the old adage, "Work smarter, not harder." Instead of trying to carry our "victim" down 5 flights of stairs, we learned how to safely lower him using the corkscrew method. Afterwards the leaders connected the Biblical lessons between our Great Rescuer - Jesus - and this rescue scenario.

RESCUE IS JUST ANOTHER WAY OF SAYING DELIVERANCE AND THAT'S JUST WHAT JESUS DOES FOR US IF WE ARE WILLING TO BE RESCUED!!!!!








RECAP PIC: Obstacle Gauntlet!!

During last weekend's event the men broke into small groups and competed in a series of rescue challenges called The Obstacle Gauntlet. Each rescue challenge was designed around a scenario in which an actual firefighter unnecessarily died in the line of duty. Firefighters are always trying to learn from past failures to prevent future loss of life and increase the likelihood of a successful rescue of those in peril. After this competition the leaders tied in the Biblical parallels between 2 great men of God (Joseph & Daniel) and the rescue scenarios. These activities provided great teachable moments.

THE MEN SOAKED IT UP!!!!!

RECAP PIC: 7 Story Rappel!!

One of the best highlights from last weekend's event was the 7 story rappel that the men got to do. There are not many adventures better at teaching the spiritual truths about faith, trust, and risk than rappelling.

THE MEN LOVED IT!!!!!

Trip Planning

We are working on our 2014 GTD events... looking forward to what God has in store =)

Friday, March 14, 2014

GTD's Tidy Bowl Man

back by pOOpular demand!

I'm at the GTD office replacing the wax ring from underneath the toilet so "everything" flows smoothly. Oh, the glamour of being a CEO ;)

Thursday, March 13, 2014

How Do You Spell Lucky?

IT'S OUR LUCKY DAY!! The IRS has selected GTD for an audit. I can now check that off my bucket list.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

No Better Way To Start The Day

There is no better way to start the day than spending time in God's Word. I was reading this morning about the time when Jesus fed 5000+ with just 5 loaves of bread & 2 fish. Sometimes people think they don't have a lot to give to God so they think they aren't very useful to Him. They look at themselves and say, "I can't do this" & "I can't do that". But the reality is that everyone has a gift... a talent... something to offer. God can & will use the "little bit" that we have to impact the multitudes if we are willing to surrender it into His hands. What are your 5 loaves & 2 fish? Are you willing to hand them over to God so He can use them to impact lives? - DUG <><

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Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Wet Paint!

We are painting Laurie's office tonight. There is now sunshine even at 10pm =)

They Came, They Saw, They ADVANCED

We had a phenomenal time this past weekend at the Men's RESCUE Advance Weekend! 20 men took on 5 tough rescue challenges. They came, they saw, they ADVANCED! It was a great, great, great event!

Pictures & videos coming soon.

Survival Salvation Bracelets!!

Thank you Terri Davis for the unexpected care package to GTD full of supplies & instructions for making Survival Salvation Bracelets!! It's a survival bracelet with the colors from the Wordless Book. The colors reveal how a person can receive salvation through faith in Jesus. We love, love, love this gift! Thank you so much Terri =)

Friday, March 7, 2014

Men Love Pancakes!!

Who wants pancakes! Our men's event includes "made to order" pancakes!! What type of pancake would you choose... and how many??

Final Dry Run

We had our last "dry run" meeting this morning for tonight's Men's RESCUE Advance event. Love working with these great guys =)

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Chuck Peterman Takes To The Air Waves

All you old school GTDers in the Tampa Bay area will want to listen to 1110 AM radio today from 11am-noon as GTD's Program Director Chuck Peterman takes to the air waves for an hour long interview about FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes). It should be entertaining... I've always told Chuck that he has a face for radio ;)

We are also looking forward to the FCA Banquet tonight put together by Chuck and featuring keynote speaker - former two-time National Champion football coach of Auburn - Coach Gene Chizik. Should be a terrific time!

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Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Checking Off The Checklists

Revising all the GTD packing checklists as I prepare to move them over to the new website.

The Grand Canyon Gear Checklist has been added to the bottom of the 2014 Grand Canyon Trip link.

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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

JUST ARRIVED!

30 brand new cots have just arrived just in time for The RESCUE Men's Advance Weekend =)

LET YOUR INNER HERO OUT!!

Hey Men! Are you looking to be challenged in your faith through exciting firefighter style obstacle courses that tie in spiritual truths with adventurous physical challenges? Then this event is for you!

Join us this Fri & Sat (March 7-8) to learn how to advance forward in a world that is retreating backward.

MEN!!! DON'T TRY TO DO LIFE BY YOURSELF! Team up with other guys who are striving after Christ and who will help lift you up when you fall. Come be a part of our RESCUE Men's Advance Event and escape the danger that comes from being a lone ranger!

Sign up today for one of the best events of the year!

Click here for details & to register








"A COWARD DIES A THOUSAND TIMES"

A One-Word Definition For Faith Is: RISK

Faith always requires you to risk something in order to display trust. We display measures of faith everyday without even thinking about it each time we sit on a chair, accelerate our vehicles, get in an elevator, or eat at a restaurant. We display that we trust that the chair will hold us, the vehicle's brakes will stop us, the elevator cables will not drop us, and the food we eat will not kill us. God created us to operate our lives in a perpetual state of faith, but He dares us to grow our faith beyond the minor accomplishments of sitting on chairs. He invites us, calls us, dares us to great things, but we must RISK leaving the comfort of our chairs in order to take hold of the deepest measures of life. Faith is like a muscle in that it wastes away if it is rarely used. But it grows bigger, stronger, and more capable when it is exercised. We have built a ministry that helps you grow your faith... that takes you to the edge and teaches you to overcome the fears that keep you from trusting and risking. There are greater tragedies in life than dying, such as living a life of regrets that comes from never risking. William Shakespeare wrote, "A coward dies a thousand times before his death, but the valiant taste of death but once." I want to invite you on a GTD event this year to help you grow your faith, to help you learn to take responsible risks, to move you from the coward's chair to the God-awesome adventure of a life of faith.

Follow our blog & check out our event calendar! We hope to see you on a GTD event this year =)

Monday, February 24, 2014

Look Who Is Learning Spanish!

Every year when I travel down to Costa Rica I always have a translator with me because usually I need questions answered quickly and I'm not fluent in Spanish. This past January when I was going through customs the man stamping my passport shook his head at me when he realized my passport was full of stamps to Costa Rica and I didn't speak fluent Spanish. I was so embarrassed and a bit ashamed, he totally called me out!  So here it goes!  Now I have no excuse!  Help hold me accountable friends! 

WATCH A FLICK THAT WON'T MAKE YOU SICK!

GTD usually shows an edited outdoor movie on our overnight camping trips. If you enjoy watching a modern Hollywood movie, but hate all the trash (cursing, nudity & sexually explicit content) coming into your household & mind then do what we do, purchase edited movies from Good Media. They are available at the same time the normal DVD is released and are usually cheaper. Enjoy!




Friday, February 21, 2014

The RESCUE Men's Advance Weekend (March 7-8)

Real Men Don't Retreat; Real Men Advance!

GTD is excited to be a part of "The RESCUE Men's Advance Weekend" along with Calvary Baptist Church of Clearwater. This event is open to all men 18 years old & older. We are taking up to 60 men through a 24-hour fire fighting rescue course that ties in spiritual parallels with our walk with God and our role in helping rescue our brothers in Christ. Men, you don't want to miss this event & the lasting impact that it will make in your life.

Date: March 7-8, 2014 (Fri-Sat)
Start Time: 3:30pm (Fri)
End Time: 4pm (Sat)
Cost: $75
Includes: Food, resources, t-shirt, teaching, training, activities, memories, & a life-changing experience.

To register click here

Thursday, February 20, 2014

ThrowBack Thursday >>> 1999 SWAMP THING!!

GTD's #tbt (ThrowBack Thursday) takes us back 15 years to 1999 when 9 brave (some would say, "crazy") souls ventured into the heart of the Everglades to do GTD's first ever 30 mile swamp hike. These nine are GTD's original swamp trail blazers. (And yes, all nine survived)

See all 20 pictures here.