The Wind River Wilderness Expedition

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The Wind River Wilderness Expedition

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What's a good way to stretch yourself while seeing some of the most impressive scenery in the world? One way is to experience the Wind River Range in Wyoming. Located southeast of Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks, this wilderness area is truly remote, with no paved roads or modern conveniences.

Last July this amazing setting was host to a group of adventure lovers who participated in the United Church of God Challenger II mentoring program for serious Christians. While hiking, rock climbing, fishing and just sitting around the campfire, participants were able to focus on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ.

The Wind River Expedition provided both physical and spiritual training to young adults desiring to grow in godly character and leadership skills and to be better prepared to serve others.

After a week of high adventure, spectacular scenery and bonding with the team, listen to some of the comments:

"I have thought long and hard this week about what made this program so special to me and what made it so hard to leave behind. Here's what I came up with: Psalm 133:1 [praising unity among God's people]. It sums up the whole experience for me. There is one direction we are all going and to be going together was encouraging. There was no division of spirit or attitude, and it gave me a feeling I can only describe as peaceful" (Paul).

"This was the most difficult and wonderful thing I've ever done...It has opened up my vision to earnestly look for what God has for us in the future—in this age and the next! Oh truly what a blessing it is to have God shine His light, His knowledge, as He pleases in our lives. Nothing is more precious.

"When I think of our journey, the scripture that comes to mind is Philippians 4:12-14 [where Paul, in the midst of distress, spoke of making it through all life's ups and downs with strength from Christ].

"Well, Challenger II wasn't exactly distress, but it was very tough. I felt and observed all of these things on our journey from myself and others—being strong and weak at the same time; in need and giving to others in need simultaneously. It is Christ who lives within us, strengthening us, using us to strengthen each other at all times" (Sheri).

"I think God has given each of us a strong group of allies, which we will each be able to rely on for the remainder of our lives" (Aaron).

Doing the difficult can make ordinary life challenges manageable when you know you can dig deeper into God's Word and find meaning and hope.

The key is to think more vertically, toward God's revealed knowledge. VT