Thank you so much for all the kind birthday wishes! I've been blessed with a lot of great years, but 47 was one of the greatest. It was a year of slaying giants... of taking down anything that attempts to limit my fruitfulness for God's glory or keep me from my full potential in Christ. The sling that God gave me to hurl the stones at each giant was made up of 3 main ingredients - increased wisdom, increased discipline, and increased fight. Those 3 ingredients opened the door to a greater level of consistency and potency in every area of my life - better rest, better sleep, embracing the Sabbath, more consistency of eating healthy, drinking more water, an unstoppable daily routine, limiting my work hours, literally making myself stop working, spending more quality time with friends & family, living more in the moment, wiser management of money & resources, confrontation of any habit or thought that is counterproductive, attacking strongholds, being more intentional, and the list goes on, but the most important improvement was increasing my prayer life from good to great. Every step I took resulted from the directions God gave me during our time together in prayer. Every wise step originated from a wise word from God. Then each step, each battle, each fight became a journey with God to my personal promise land. It wasn't a self reliant endeavor. It was birthed in prayer and powered by God's presence. And that was the whole point. The essence of life isn't what we do for God, it's what we do with God. It's the difference between being a Martha or a Mary... someone who is distracted by all the service for God that they stay in the kitchen verses letting the dishes and meal preparation take a back seat to spending time with the guest of honor - Jesus - sitting at His feet listening to His teaching. Understanding that so much of life is just smoke and mirrors that easily distracts us from the One Thing that matters - a close abiding relationship with God. Nothing else matters as much as that. And nothing else compares to the surprising greatness of truly knowing Christ Jesus. Life is this ultimate road trip with God where both of us should be riding in a Jeep off the beaten path with the windows down and the tunes cranking while the breeze hugs every part of your body, and all you can think is, "I wouldn't want to be anywhere else, with anyone else, doing anything else! I'm fully alive right now in this moment and sharing it with my Best Friend!" That is what life was created to be. But all the smoke and mirrors and distractions too often lures away from the ultimate road trip over to an empty rat race full of road rage. But Jesus is simply waiting to jump in the Jeep for the ultimate road trip. It can be the greatest adventure! You may think He is going to take you on this safe uneventful trail, but He will point you down every curvy dangerous road and each road will lead to a place where a personal giant is blocking your path. It's the roads we so often try to avoid, but Jesus ain't afraid. At each giant in the road you stop the Jeep and Jesus coaches you through slaying your giant... what each giants weakness is and how to slay him. Then you jump back in the Jeep, crank up the tunes, and head down the next dangerous road while reminiscing about the victory you just experienced as well as all the other awesome past victories. Building memories, and moments, and special times between you and your Best Friend. Slaying giants along the way. That's what 47 was for me. And I'm still in the Jeep excited about my next unexpected and dangerous road... itching for and craving my next fight. With every giant slayed the journey only gets sweeter. I'm thrilled about 48 and the dangerous roads ahead. I'm not afraid. I love to fight! I could die today or tomorrow or 3 weeks from now and I could care less because the eternal road trip will be even better, but as long as I'm here I'm going to be spending my days road tripping with Jesus and slaying giants and feeling the breeze hugging my soul =)
Wednesday, September 26, 2018
Monday, September 17, 2018
GET AHEAD OF THE GAME! ...LET GTD CUSTOM BUILD A GOD-AWESOME CHRIST-CENTERED EVENT FOR YOUR GROUP IN 2019!
Costa Rica Mission Trips:
Adventure Trips to GA, NC, & TN:
Weekend & Spring Break Retreats to FL:
Day Trips in the Tampa Bay area:
OR... a customized trip to:
--> The Grand Canyon - AZ (S. Rim, N. Rim, or Horseshoe Bend)
--> Havasu Falls - AZ
--> Zion National Park - UT
--> Bryce Canyon National Park - UT
--> The Mighty 5 - UT
--> Durango / Telluride / Silverton / Ouray - CO
--> Backpacking on the Appalachian Trail
--> Backpacking on the Florida Trail
--> Canoe Camping to Coastal Islands - FL
If it's outdoors - something we're familiar with - and glorifies God > we want to build a dream trip for your group!
(Feel free to share this your Pastors & Group Leaders!)
Friday, September 14, 2018
Special thanks to my awesome next door neighbor (Jerry Mullins) who gave me nearly 60 sections of his old wooden fencing along with the 4x4 posts a few months ago. Obviously it's weathered and has portions that are rotting, but I've got some clever and creative ideas of how I can repurpose this into something useful, stylish (hopefully!), and inexpensive. Will it work??? We will see!
I'm hopeful to kick off the house renovation projects sometime in early October... just in time for milder temperatures. Right now I'm collecting supplies on the cheap. More updates to come =)
PS: Thank you Carson for your hard work and efforts to help me pick up, transport, and stack the word fencing!
Thursday, September 13, 2018
Still cherishing our 16 mile overnight backpacking trip through The Narrows last week in Utah's Zion National Park with Calvary Church of Clearwater!!
It was full of endless river crossings, technical footing, and slow plodding, but it is such a unique and special national treasure... a feast for the eyes! UTAH ROCKS!!
Monday, September 10, 2018
Sunday, September 9, 2018
We spent the last 2 days cleaning and repacking the GTD adventure equipment at our gear cache in Flagstaff, AZ.
Each trip out here we add a little more gear. It may not look like it in the pictures, but GTD has amassed over $5000 worth of quality equipment that currently enables us to outfit 12 multi-night backpackers, 12 day hikers, and 12 base campers. We are steadily building our "GTD West" footprint =).
We are already working on our 2019 out west adventure calendar and hope you can be a part of the great, unique, & God-awesome experiences that the western United States has to offer!
Thank you to all of our donors, supporters, and participants that help enable the growth, development, and expansion of GTD!! We love you guys! God bless you!!
Friday, September 7, 2018
Thursday, September 6, 2018
We completed one of the most brutally challenging backpacking treks that we've ever done in one of the most majestic places that we've ever seen - 16 miles on The Narrows of Zion National Park.
The trip included one night of camping alongside of the Virgin River.
It was a brutal trail, but all 12 of us completed what we started... including 10 from Calvary Church of Clearwater.
Way to go hikers!!
More pics to share soon =)
Tuesday, September 4, 2018
Last night Team GTD pre-packed 12 backpacks in preparation for one of the greatest hikes on earth!
A huge thanks to my fellow partners in ministry =)
Here we gooooooooo!!
Calvary Church of Clearwater arrived safely in Las Vegas and we competed our 3 hour drive to Zion National Park.
We are all tucked into bed in this amazing luxury rental cabin. Our first big adventure begins Tuesday morning!! It's going to be an unforgettable week!
Sunday, September 2, 2018
(The original team that recon'd Utah 3 years ago)
Erin has arrived and we are 3 strong going into this week's Utah Trip, but not before we catch a show in Vegas!! Thanks to Erin we are about to see Cirque Du Soleil - Mystere - at Treasure Island!!! What a way to kick off an unforgettable week!