Sunday, November 13, 2011

the adventure of inconvenience {our trip to Oregon}

"An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is an adventure wrongly considered."
-G.K Chesterton

Life is all about perspective, is it not? The way we view God, our life as a whole, individual situations, the people around us, in it all it's important to have the right perspective. It's amazing how the perspective and attitude you choose (yes, choose) in these areas can radically affect the outcome of situations. I mean, as Chesterton says, it turns inconveniences into adventures. That's pretty huge.

I have thought of this quote a lot in my life since first reading it years ago. In those moments when I was overwhelmed, annoyed, frustrated, or whatever, I would often find myself thinking of this quote and asking God to help me see everything in my life as such: an adventure. It is amazing how motivated you can become when you remember that you are in an adventure, a big story that God is orchestrating and you are playing a part in.

When traveling a couple thousand miles across the country with two young children and pulling a loaded trailer behind you, you are bound to face a few inconveniences. However, at first, things were going very smooth on our drive to Oregon. Our kids were wonderful travelers, mostly looking at books or out the window at the changing scenery. Other than a few times of tired fussiness, our journey was going well.

Our second day of travel soon brought us to Minnesota, surrounded by huge windmills as the sun was coming up. Our day was again starting smooth--until about lunchtime, that is. As we got off an exit to stop for lunch, our truck started making this awful clicking sound. We had no idea what it was, but it did not sound good. Once stopped, Danny checked underneath the truck and found a bunch of oil but could not trace the leak. He asked a few mechanics in town if they could look at it, but they were both too busy to look at it that day. We had to keep moving, so we bought some oil, filled it back up, prayed, and planned on checking again down the road.

We drove all the way across South Dakota, checking the oil about every 50-100 miles, and still listening to that clicking sound. We eventually made it to Gillette, Wyoming, and thanked God for taking us safely across big ol' South Dakota.
Wall Drug, South Dakota: There are 74 signs from 355 miles before until you actually reach it. We counted.
We headed out the next morning for Bozeman, Montana, where Danny's mom and sister live. The truck was still clicking, and seemed to be running a little rough, but we kept going, still checking the oil along the way. We were hoping and praying it would make it through the multiple mountain passes that we still had to go over.

We made it over the pass before Billings, Montana (whew! And that wasn't even a steep one!), yet even after driving through Billings the road had a lot of steep climbs.

And sadly, the truck just couldn't take it anymore.

Where the truck gave up.
Trying to call Triple A. We hardly had any service!
At least it was sunny!

Here's where the inconvenience comes in.

Our engine had blown, and we hardly had any phone service. Danny called Triple A many times and each time would lose service mid-conversation. He finally stayed on the phone long enough to find out they don't cover the towing of vehicles with trailers. And while they tried to transfer us to a commercial towing company, it cut out again.
    In the midst of it all, I just kept thinking, "I can't believe this is happening." We still had a long way to go to get to Oregon, and we kinda needed a truck to get there! We couldn't even text people or tell Facebook friends to pray for us, we didn't have enough service!  But then I remembered good ol' G.K. Chesterton. We had just encountered a huge inconvenience, VERY huge. We had to get to Oregon fairly soon since our landlord was waiting for us and our truck wasn't going anywhere for awhile. Then I realized that isn't this what good adventures were made of--inconveniences, trials, and challenges to overcome? Danny and I could make this a depressing, frustrating, fearful situation OR we could choose to see it rightly--to see that God is in control, that we had nothing to fear and therefore it's now an adventure. So now its fun and exciting instead of being the end of the world. 

    It seems like children naturally have this--they tend to look past the "inconvenience" part and see right to the "adventure"--oh, to be like a child! Caedon enjoyed playing on the hill where we broke down and of course loved riding in a big tow truck. And of course, it all worked out fine. Danny finally got a hold of a tow company in Bozeman (more than 100 miles away from this point) who came for us while we waited a few hours. His name was Terry and he was the nicest man! His company also fixes cars so he is handling the process of shipping our (new yet obviously faulty) broken engine to the engine company and then installing it when our new engine gets shipped back (so glad we got an engine with a warranty!). Danny and I were also blown away at God's provision, once again. Though our engine was acting up the whole day before, we broke down in Montana by Danny's family instead of the-middle-of-nowhere, South Dakota. We got to spend a few extra days with Danny's mom, sister and her family and were able to do this:

    Switchfoot's "Rise Above It" was our theme song for this trip so we had to put it on our trailer. Fitting, yes? 

    When trials come, choose to "Rise Above It." With God's grace, you can. Choose to consider rightly--and you will see how adventurous your life will become.


    Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips

    Love the pictures, makes me smile. Makes me want to jump in the pictures and give hugs and kisses ♥ Seeing their sweet smiles ... priceless. I love and miss them so. ♥ Momma ♥

    Jody said... Best Blogger Tips

    Love this! Looks like "perspective" is the word of the day :-)

    Jrd said... Best Blogger Tips

    Awesome! I read this story at a good time.

    P.S., I still read my books the way Alayna does. Things make more sense that way.

    liz said... Best Blogger Tips

    Amy, great blog! Loving the pictures!!! I really enjoyed the concept of turning a positive into a negative...or seeing the positives instead of dwelling on the negative. Isn't it so easy to get lost in our own mini miseries if we let ourselves? Thanks for the fresh outlook...perspective:)

    Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips

    What a wonderful reminder of God's faithfulness. It is so true and completely inspiring. Love the cute house and all the travel photos. Think about you everyday and love you to the mountain goats! MammaMia

    Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips

    You guys are really inspiring! Can't wait to read more!

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