The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Deuteronomy 31:8
My family loves to travel during the summer. Over the past three years, we have traveled to 48 of the 50 states. We especially like going to national parks, so we can hike around in nature. A year ago, we went to Zion National Park in Utah, for the second time. While there, we decided to go on a hike called Angel’s Landing, because we had not done it the first time we were there. The hike is about a five and a half mile round trip, with a 1,500 foot elevation gain. On the way up the mountain, we were all really tired, because we had not gotten much sleep. We had woken up at about six o’clock that morning to be able to get to the hike before it got too hot. When we started the hike, it was 95 degrees fahrenheit; and it kept getting hotter throughout the day. By the time we reached the top of the mountain, we were pretty miserable, from the heat and the intense hike. We had to continue encouraging each other to keep going and not give up. Once we finished the hike, we looked out from the top of the mountain, and what we saw took our breath away. It was one of the most beautiful sights we had ever seen in our live’s. You could see a river running through the canyon 1,500 feet below us. There was a beautiful mixture of the reddish colors of the rocks and the green of the plants. We stayed there for awhile just admiring what we had come to see. This is like a lot of our lives. Sometimes it gets really hard, and you just want to give up and take an easier path. But God is there, right beside us, encouraging us to keep going and reach the end. Because only He knows what amazing prize is at the end of each of our struggles. So even when you cannot see what good could possibly come out of something that is hard, remember God does, and He will help you get there. You just have to keep pushing and trust God.
By: Sam Ottinger ('23)
Candler, North Carolina