Michael Under a Rock

Under the Circumstances

From The HeartMotivation

In just two weeks we went from feeling on top of the world (almost literally as we stood on the mountain looking down at the Delaware Water Gap) to an emergency situation with my mom in the hospital and having to take care of my dad and my handicapped sister.  Needless to say, we were a little shell shocked.  Sending our oldest two sons back off to college, juggling the responsibilities of two households, harvesting and putting up the produce from two gardens, and still trying find time to make a living.  Not really much time for hiking the past couple of weeks. But there has been a good bit of time for some serious reflection on what really matters in life. I’d really like to tell you we’re doing alright under the circumstances…but I can’t. Keep reading

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Getting ready to hike up to Angel's Landing

Healing Through Hiking

From The Heart

Hiking provides a number of health benefits. Not just physically, but also mentally and spiritually. Our family became keenly aware of a specific benefit through personal experience a few years ago. We were planning a trip back in 2012 not unlike the trip we are planning right now. The boys had never been to visit the desert southwest that Randi and I had fallen in love with. They had heard us speak in glowing terms and excited tones of the grandeur that we had seen and very much wanted to see it for themselves. We planned a three-week RV trip to Utah for early May. Keep reading

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Aspen Forest

What the Trees Taught Me

From The Heart

I love to hear other outdoor lovers tell about their experiences and what cultivates their love for nature. Today we have a quest post from a long-time friend of our family. Joel Ruse spent his younger years right here in the Hoosier state. After college he followed a job opportunity and settled in the mountains of Colorado. He’s experienced a lot of life since leaving us behind and has developed a special attachment to the land he now calls home. Keep reading

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2017

2017

From The HeartSeasons

Here we are at the end of the year. And here we are at the beginning of yet another one. One set of opportunities is passed and another lies before us. I’m not big on New Year’s resolutions, but I do find it a good time for reflecting on what has taken place over the last year. A good time for setting some goals for the future. Take a few minutes with me and let’s see where we’ve been and where we’re going. Keep reading

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The Manger and the Cross

Merry Christmas

From The HeartSeasons

Today we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. A baby born in humility. Without the fanfare of a royal birth. But that’s exactly what he was—royalty…King of Kings and Lord of Lords. But he wasn’t born to live the life that we associate with a king. He was here on a mission. To provide the only means of redemption for fallen, sinful man. For you and for me. Keep reading

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Freefall

Freefall

From The Heart

You’ve had that dream, right? You know, the one where you fall. Maybe it’s off the ladder, over the cliff, or out of a plane, but you know the dream. That nightmarish feeling of hopelessness as you plummet toward what will certainly be your swift, yet painful demise. That’s where we’re at folks. Plunging headlong into a freefall that ultimately ends in the abyss that is… Keep reading

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Sunrise on Salamonie Reservoir

Mike’s Bucket List

Bucket ListFrom The Heart

Well, I was all set to tell you about a few of the things I want to do before I die. About how I want to hike the Grand Canyon rim to rim. I was ready to tell you in great detail about my plans for a spectacular trip to Alaska—The Last Frontier. Or even the trip we’re planning as a family for May 2017 to backpack for a couple weeks in the backcountry of Utah. But things happen that bring us a moment of clarity. A time when we’re able to see things from a different and, quite possibly, better perspective. Such was the case this week as I was contemplating what I would classify as my top bucket list items. Keep reading

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Dark Cloud

When Life Hits You Hard

From The Heart

Do you ever feel just a little bit overwhelmed by life… or maybe a lot overwhelmed? Maybe you feel like there is a black cloud following you around. Maybe, as in our case this week, there is actually a literal black cloud following you around. It seems like the last two weeks have spawned one circumstance after another for our family. I won’t bore you with the details, but I will say there have been some things this month that have us waiting for the proverbial shoe to drop. It brings to mind the story I first read in Max Lucado’s book In the Eye of the Storm. Keep reading

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When Man’s Best Friend Became My Best Friend

From The Heart

We’ve all heard that age-old expression about dogs being “man’s best friend.” I grew up with dogs around the house and always enjoyed them.  At the same time, I knew there must be more to the relationship than what I had experienced to warrant the title of “best” friend. I finally understand now how that accolade was earned by canines all over the world.  What changed for me was when man’s best friend became my best friend. Keep reading

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