(Part 2 of Camping Experience 2008)
Each season has its beauty in color, does it not ? The leaves were already turning where we were camping... the winter season takes the largest piece of the year in the higher altitudes and the other seasons take what is left.
I thought this leaf was exceptionally beautiful ! God's beauty around me is always a joy to me when we are in His wilderness but to enjoy His beauty we do need to have at least a minimum of creature comforts !!
We have tried over the years to find ways to improve the 'quality' of our camping experience and a few years ago when I saw this two room tent (10 x 20) with 7' ceilings I had to have it !
I found when I was looking through my photos that I did not have a good one of our tent, but this one will do ! The two men in the photo - my husband Vic, and Brandon (our friends' grown son) - figure in my story today !
In the bedroom of our tent, we have a queen size air mattress. It is two 9" air mattress zipped to-gether to make it 18" high ! Nice !! Except have you ever slept on an unheated water bed? An unheated air mattress feels exactly the same !! Cold ! So we learned - after the first year- that you really need to put a quilt in between the mattress and your sheet!
We were trying to pack light this year because we no longer have our van. Everything had to go into our car.
I was packing up the food and Vic was packing most everything else. At one point he asked, "I guess we don't need this extra quilt?" Without turning around I said ... "Yes, we do !! we need it for over the mattress!"
Later ...... after the tent was set up and the air mattresses were blown up, I was making up the bed when.....I suddenly had a sinking feeling.
"Where is the extra quilt ?" I asked . "It's right here," Vic said, holding up a small afghan ! "That is NOT a quilt !" I informed him, but it was tooo late to explain the difference between a quilt and an Afghan.
Well, there was nothing we could do. I was thankful we had a flannel sheet and we put the small Afghan over the mattress but I knew it would not do much good and it didn't !!
We were cozy warm on our topsides, but our undersides felt like they were lying on ice ! So we turned a lot the first night trying to keep from freezing !! It was cold !!
The next morning, laying in bed trying to decide if I was ready to brave the even colder air outside the covers..... I tried to think of something we could do .... We had no extra blankets ... there was no place we could buy one !
I finally gave up trying to come up with a solution ! We would just have to suffer !!
I had already turned my thoughts to other concerns of the day when suddenly the Lord dropped one word into my mind . "Newspapers !"
I knew immediately what He meant !! Of course !! News papers are an excellent insulator! I then realized that I hadn't thought to pray about my problem ! It seemed like one of those things that was our own fault and how could God provide a blanket where there was none ? Don't we often limit the power or resourcefulness of our God ??
I woke Vic and told him.... "The Lord told me how we can be warm! Put newspapers between the mattress and the sheet !"
"Nah, that won't work!" was his off the cuff remark!
I was adamant that I had received instruction from the Lord and He wouldn't tell us to do something that wouldn't work !! So Vic agreed ... we'd drive to the lodge and the little grocery there and buy newspapers and hopefully pick up several free local papers.
Later in the day. on our way back from our hike. we pulled in to the resort center and found there were no papers to be had anywhere!!
"Well, I guess we can't do it !" my husband logically stated.
But I was not so easily deterred ! "But the Lord wouldn't have said to use newspapers if there was no where for us to get some!"
Lori, our friend spoke up ! "You know, I think we might have some newspapers in the back of our tent trailer cupboard that have just accumluted over the years!"
And sure enough.... soon after she walked triumphantly into our campsite carrying a stack of old newspapers !
I spread them out over the mattress, put the Afghan over and our sheet and there we were !! Problem solved and we were toasty warm the remaining nights ! As long as we didn't stick any part of our body out from under our covers !!
We saw God's watchful provision for us on our camping week-end not once but twice !!
Brandon packed his clothes quickly when he came home from work Friday and since it was warm he packed accordingly - shorts and t-shirts -- no jacket at all !!
Since he and his parents arrived in the camp after dark we were already in bed and didn't see them until the next morning when Brandon came walking into our campsite !
I took one look at him and said , "Brandon, aren't you freezing? Where is your jacket?" And that is when he told me ... shorts and t-shirts is all he had thought to bring. The temperature was 3' C /37'F.
Brandon is bigger than either his dad or Vic and his dad had no extra jackets !
Vic immediately came to the rescue ! He said .. "I have an extra jacket ! It's too big on me!"
Why he would have packed that jacket I have no idea ! especially when we were trying to pack light ! The jacket was a warm one.... and Brandon got into it .. except for the sleeves being too short but he didn't mind !! He credits Vic's jacket for saving his life ---- only indirectly because of course it was God who moved Vic to pack a jacket he would not need or wear !! And he was obedient to the prompting even though it would have made no sense had he stopped to question it !!
Our Father is truly a great God !!
He proved to me again this last week-end that often before we think to ask, He answers !!
Mat 6:8 "For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him."
Isa 65:24 "And it shall come to pass.. That before they call, I will answer.."