13: What if We Lived Every Day Like That?

What if We Lived Every Day Like That?Our last three episodes were about storytelling. We invited you to participate in our four-week class, “A Story Big Enough to Live In.” During the final class, our friends practiced what we all learned by sharing a story or two. And so we got to hear what God was up to in each other’s lives.
This was all fun and we learned tons, but it had been a lot of work putting the class together and now we had loads of work ahead. We were leaving on a road trip vacation in just under four days!
We determined to continue staying out of God’s way and let him reveal his details for our trip just as he’d done for the class. All we knew was that we were headed southwest. We had a direction and a single room reservation for the Grand Canyon. Everything else was a big question mark.
God had used our class to show us the reason why we started this adventure in podcasting. He showed us he was at work in the lives of our friends and that he’s the central character, the hero of our stories. He’s not hidden, he’s right here. We thought about all that and both had the same questions.
  • What would happen if we let God take the steering wheel on our road trip?
  • What does it look like to live our lives expecting to see God show up?
  • What happens if we accept that he was and still is – in charge?
There are two points that we want to illustrate in the next few episodes:
#1 What would it be like to give our vacation planning to God?
#2 How can we share the stories in one to three minutes (just like the class)?
It’s been a fun adventure. Come along and find out what God showed us, where he took us, who he put in our path and see how God does a Grand Canyon adventure.
Act 1: Matthew #1
We made it to Lincoln, Nebraska. As we approached downtown we could see the shrine built by hundreds of thousands of Cornhusker fans. Memorial Stadium Capacity: 81,091. On a fall day, excited fans emblazened in a sea of red and white wait for the opening kickoff. But today it stood empty. It’s spring and the students filled the coffee shops and restaurants across the highway from Stadium Drive. Instead of a game, they were anticipating the end of the school year. We joined the crowd for dinner at Vincenzo’s and spent the night.
The next morning we were packing up the Thule when a guy appeared from behind the van parked next to us and drew us into a conversation about Brent’s Golden Gopher hockey hat. “Here for a tournament?” he smiled. What stood out most was that he had an uncanny resemblance to Matthew McConaughey.
“No, we’re heading west on a road trip.” Brent muttered while lifting Lisa’s bag up to the top of the Rav. He said he was a dentist AND a farmer outside of Kansas City. “Where exactly are you headed?” he smiled. “Grand Canyon,” I said trying to secure the latch on the topper. “How far are you expecting to go today?” he asked. “Moab, Utah I think, but it depends on where we can get a room tonight and how long it takes to get across Colorado,” Brent said while retrieving his coffee cup from on top of the car.
“How about you?” he blurted out, “What brings you to Lincoln?” He was in town to buy a new tractor. He had a large, long empty trailer behind his pick up. He talked about the hockey stadium in KC and maybe an NHL expansion team there, dentistry and farming before asking us if we knew about the coming weather front. We wondered if this really was Matthew McConaughey in disguise. Maybe he was getting ready for his next movie and he was practicing on us. Whoever heard of a dentist slash farmer who follows hockey?
“You’ll want to get ahead of this front before you get caught in the storm,” he warned as he walked toward his truck. “Have a great time in Arizona!” he waved.
“Drive safe and enjoy your new tractor,” Brent didn’t really know what to say. But now he does, “Thanks for the tip … Matthew.” As we reached the middle of Nebraska, the lightening in our rear view mirror flickered. He was right about the coming storm.

Act 2: Kid Curry and Cisco Clifton’s Fillin’ Station
There were no vacancies in Moab, Utah. Scores of college kids were celebrating the end of the year by rock climbing, camping and rafting at the Colorado River. And no rooms in Grand Junction due to high school graduation. We finally found a spot in Glenwood Springs, another college town. It’s a beautiful little city where we found more hospitality. A stranger asked us if we needed directions and ended up pointing to toward one of the best meals we had on the trip. On our way back to the car, Brent wondered about a store front called Doc Holiday. We knew who Doc Holiday was, but it wouldn’t sink in until the next day.
We set out early the next morning and then took a break in Parachute, CO. The rest stop overlooked the railroad tracks where we learned the story of Harvey Logan, a.k.a. Kid Curry. He was an outlaw and member of Butch Cassidy and Sundance Kid’s Wild Bunch gang. Harvey reportedly shot himself in the head to avoid capture by a posse outside of Parachute, in June 1904 after robbing a Denver and Rio Grande train near where the rest stop is today. However, rumors persist that the body was misidentified and the Kid escaped to South America with Butch and Sundance. Either way, the Kid’s grave site is in Pioneer Cemetery in Glenwood Springs. It’s a short distance from fellow gunfighter, Doc Holiday.

Back in the car, we coasted down the west side of the Rocky Mountains while searching online for our next motel. We were headed for Arches National Park outside of Moab, but figured we’d reach the southern part of the state by evening. We confirmed a room at the Recapture Lodge in Bluff, Utah. But that’s getting ahead of the story.

On the phone, the motel clerk recommended taking a road less traveled for some more interesting scenery. “Take the cutoff from the interstate to Cisco. It’s not marked, you’ll need to watch for it. You won’t regret it,” he advised. The town is off the grid – so we had to pay attention. You see, Cisco is a ghost town.
corvettes2We found the exit – just a small cattle gate off the interstate. Off in the distance, we saw what was left Cisco. But instead of being alone in this ghost town, we discovered five cars juxtaposed against buildings crumbling in the desert sun. Not sure what they were doing there, but the image of five brightly colored Corvettes against the dilapidated buildings left us feeling like we’d landed in a David Lynch film. It was definitely a ghost town, except there were still two occupied houses with modern mail boxes out front. The signs on these homes read, “No Trespassing – SERIOUSLY”!
After a brief stop, the Corvettes started their engines and we took a queue to follow them out of town toward Moab while playing Johnny Cash’s song, “Cisco Clifton’s Fillin’ Station.”

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