“That was the most amazing rafting trip I’ve ever been on,” Josh told as we secured a raft to the trailer last Friday. “Not for the guiding or the rapids, but the conversation. It was all about Jesus, not the shallow and meaningless things we usually find ourselves talking about.” Josh is a great raft guide with a sincere heart for the Lord. This is his fourth season guiding for Vessels for Honor (now part of Journey Quest), so he’s experienced countless trips as a guide. I haven’t. In fact it was my first time guiding guests, and Josh was along to observe and critique. I was so blessed to do my check-off run with a family who loves Jesus and wants to see His name glorified! I asked a few questions and started the conversation, but the Holy Spirit led it from there. Between rapids, we enjoyed sweet fellowship and encouraged one another in our faith. As we floated through calm water near the end of the trip, I had the opportunity to pray for some very specific needs that are burdening this family. And then they turned it around and prayed for me, for Josh, and for Journey Quest.
We began our staff training just over a month ago with an amazing six-day trip down the Green River. Since that time I’ve logged over 120 hours and about 300 river miles. It has been really refreshing to be on the learning end of things. I’ve been challenged to try things which were way out of my comfort zone, including several intentional swims and a couple unintentional ones (yes, I got one on video). I’ve learned a lot from our guides who have much more river experience than me.
Even during training our experienced guides have been able to serve quite a few guests. During the month of May we served almost 120 – about three times more than we expected – and June is already off to a great start! Because I’ve been in training, I haven’t been able to guide these guests down the river, but helped out in other ways such as manning the office and driving the shuttle bus. From here on I should have many more opportunities to guide guests down the river. I pray that with this will come many more divine appointments where I can be used by God to start meaningful spiritual conversations, proclaim the Gospel clearly, and reap a reward for the Kingdom.
Friday’s trip reaffirmed to me God’s call to this ministry with Journey Quest. I was amazed how well we were able to get to know this family in only a few short hours. In the past, I’ve spent days together with students and not had so much opportunity. It is great to finally get certified to guide a raft, but that was small compared to how the trip impacted me, our guests, and one of our staff.
Please continue to pray for us as we serve a steady stream guests and for our continued training. Four of our guides still need to finish their certification, plus we need to start training for rock-climbing, get to know other stretches of the river, and scout several peak climb routes for the multi-day trips we have coming up in July. Last fall when I joined on, we had no idea God would do this much our first season. Pray that even in all the busyness of the season, we will glorify Him in all that we do!