I recently returned from a road trip through South Dakota. We explored the Black Hills on winding, tree-lined highways and snapped pictures of rock formations while I contemplated the lessons I learned from my travels.

What is built on rock endures. Gutzon Borglum carved Rushmore into the granite of a mountainside. The memorial to our nation’s leaders has endured decades of driving rain and lashing winds. God tells us when we build our lives on the rock of faith, we will endure the decades of life’s storms and challenges. We succeed by building our lives on truth, trust, and commitment -- the foundations that last.

It’s a long, hard walk to the top. We joined the Volksmarch at Crazy Horse Mountain and hiked almost six miles over rough terrain, struggled up steep mountain trails, and finally enjoyed the view from the outstretched arm of the Crazy Horse carving. Life is often like that climb: exhausting, difficult, and dangerous; but if we persevere, we are rewarded for our efforts with a greater view of God’s purpose.

 

Some mysteries will never be explained. At the Cosmos Mystery Area, trees lean sideways, cabin walls slant crookedly, tennis balls roll uphill, water defies gravity and pools in odd formations. No one can explain why this place is strange. No one can understand why some events occur. Only God knows the wisdom of his greater plan, and we will never comprehend all the mysteries of his ways.

Enjoy time with family and friends. The best part of any journey is exploring new roads and sharing experiences with our traveling companions. In South Dakota, I most enjoyed sitting with my family near the campfire at night, talking about our adventures of the day, and planning new excitement for the next. I am grateful for the people who share my life. I know I still have much to learn, and I’m looking forward to everything the road ahead reveals.

This summer, I pray you discover wonderful new vistas. Know God is always with you on your travels.

What have you learned on a trip or time away? What do you look forward to discovering in the future?

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After a long and dreary winter, spring has finally arrived. With the start of a new season come many changes: days are longer, the sun is brighter, and I find that many new activities are demanding my time and attention.

 

I’ll be posting less frequently over this spring and summer to allow me to focus hours and energy on some other important areas now. I will be traveling and exploring our beautiful country, volunteering at a friend’s charity event, spending special days with friends and family, discovering new neighborhoods while walking the dog, and completing my book manuscript.

 

 

I’m looking forward to checking in here periodically to share what I learn on my adventures and hear how others are spending their time this summer.

Know that God is always with you through every season of the year. I hope you spend your summer doing everything you enjoy.

What is on your list of things to do this season? How will you spend your summer days?

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For those who need some extra inspiration today, I offer a few of my favorite Bible verses.

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Jesus Christ” (Philippians 4:6-7).

Remember that God knows all you need, and he will always act on behalf of your highest good.

“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27).

Have faith that God is always with you, and let his presence give you peace.

“I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God” (Romans 8:38-39).

Believe he cares for you and has a plan for your well-being.

“For I, the Lord your God, will hold your right hand, saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you’” (Isaiah 41:13).

Trust the Lord holds you in his mighty right hand.

God will wipe away every tear from their eyes . . . ; There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away . . . ‘Behold, I make all things new’” (Revelation 21:4-5).

Know that no matter what happens, God is always in control, and he always promises a new beginning.

Today I pray you know that a loving God cares for you. Be at peace and trust that God is aware, and he knows everything you need.

What is your prayer today? What verses remind you that God has you in his care?

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