Our time in The Show-Me State aka Missouri has come to an end and off we head towards Wyoming. We are halfway to our destination and you’ll have to read to see whether or not I’m getting cold feet.
God Be With Ye
In the morning, I got up and realized that I had a 12 hour drive ahead of me. It was a challenge I have chosen to accept. Partly because I couldn’t find anything along south Nebraska that I was interested in doing. Plus I really just wanted to get this whole journey over with. It doesn’t sound like the most faithful thing to say but in truth I was over it. I hate road tripping. I don’t like driving because it takes forever.
I felt so untethered to everything. I had quit my job, left my family, and everything that was familiar to me for this. I really just wanted to feel rooted in something. That’s why I was looking forward to being with Scott and Charissa Smith. They were familiar and they are spirit filled. I needed some grounding. Because now that I am leaving Missouri I am halfway to my final destination. Wyoming will be where I decide whether to push through, stay still, or turn back. This was it.
I say that, but I found it hard to leave Missouri as well. My two dearest friends awoke early to see me off. I couldn’t stop hugging them, I love them so. We prayed for each other and I asked them to pray over my car. It was funny to see their expression when I asked but they agreed but prayed over it earnestly. Just another reason why I love them.
We finally hit the road bidding CEF goodbye and went in search of a diner for breakfast. Unfortunately, I don’t have the name of the diner we ended up at but it was cute, affordable, and located in town west of CEF.
After breakfast we took to the highway and drove and then drove and then drove some more. We did pull over to have lunch and to pump gas. There wasn’t much along the route other than prairies and hills. My dad and I haven’t traveled much through the USA so the sight was plain but exciting. There were also a few places along the highway where you could pull off and visit historical places. It was a unique scenery. I remember when we were driving through Kansas and my dad had commented on how lucrative corn must be around those parts because the field goes on for miles on end.
We encountered some construction along the way. It seems that the cars around here were used to it but we found it a bit tricky to navigate. Some of the cones have you steering over the yellow line into what seems to be the oncoming traffic lane. Rest assured God had us and we made it through.
We continued driving up hills and through plains and since we were about 6 hours into the 12 hour drive you think such a sight would make the drive become long and tiring but there was something to see every few miles. There was a huge gorge that seemed to go on for miles and it was breathtaking. If we didn’t have a timeline I would have loved to pull over and fully explore it. Next time hopefully. Everywhere we looked was something new and exciting. The highlight of the drive was a few hours before dusk when we encountered our first train! I have seen train tracks all my life but never have I seen an actual train with my very own eyes. It was magical and so long! It was well worth the drive, lol.
As evening came there is nothing but us and trucks on the roads now. That being said, after the sunset the roads became dangerous for us. There aren’t many street lights along the state roads so it was hard to see more than a few feet in front of the car. Not to mention that it started raining and on top of that it had gotten really windy which sucks when you are going up and down hills. There was no town to pull over to…nothing for miles. And when we finally did reach a town it was only a few miles until Scott and Charissa’s. We were so close so I kept driving. We had prayed for a safe trip so I knew we would make it. Although, I will say I didn’t stop praying until we arrived safely. That’s what you call praying through the storm. Whatever keeps your eyes and trust on God.
- When driving in a rural area please make sure your headlights are clean and clear. It will give you better vision since there aren’t many street lights. Or try to avoid driving at night.
- Make sure that you have more than a half tank of gas because the stations are few and far inbetween.
When we finally did get to the Smith’s it was no longer raining. The adrenaline was still pumping through me from the drive so I didn’t go to bed right away, even though I was dead tired. I stayed up with Scott and Charissa filling them in on the trip and catching up with them. I told them about my brief time at CEF and they spoke to me about ministry. Specifically, being a missionary. They told me their stories and experiences. It was interesting hearing the side that isn’t spoken from a platform but in an honest conversation.
When we decided to turn in for the night and I went to my room I noticed that even though it wasn’t Autumn yet, it was freezing. I’m so glad I decided to pack a sweater in my travel bag. I bundled myself up in all the blankets and went to bed.
The next morning I woke up early. Only because I was still on Florida time which was two hours ahead of Wyoming. Charissa was getting ready for work and we chatted for a bit. She said that she was going to the movies that night and that I was welcomed to join. I decided that day of rest was much needed after the long drive we’ve had so I took her up on her offer. Charissa went off to work and I decided to spend some time with the Lord.
I also chose to give Charissa some of the blankets I made so she can have them for her future children. I asked her to pick whichever ones she liked and wove in the ends of those blankets. My knitters out there know the struggle of weaving. Shortly after Scott and I went around town. We stopped by an antiques store, pumped gas, and went to the post office where I sent a postcard to my mom that I got from the CEF bookstore.
At noon Scott, my dad, and I went to Arbys in the next town over to have lunch with Charissa. It was there that I had Arbys for the second time in my life and I actually liked it. I got the roast beef on a sandwich bread. I don’t remember exactly what I ordered but I can say that it was delicious. I also couldn’t finish all of it so I saved part two for the next day.
During our lunch we talked about varies things. I got to learn more about my dad when I saw him interacting with others in an honest conversation. Later Charissa told me that she saw God shining through him.
“I looked at him and knew he was a man of God.”Charissa Smith
I hope to have the same affect on people someday. #goals
I spent the rest of the afternoon applying for jobs and working on OMK. This slower pace of life was just what we needed. A quiet time to relax and to just slow down from being on the go for 3 days straight.
Dinner and a Movie
My dad was especially tired. He spent the day resting in his room after lunch and was going to have leftovers for dinner. When Charissa got home from work she and I went over to the Massey’s for dinner. They were really sweet and welcomed me to their table. Scott joined shortly after and then we all set off for the movies to watch Overcomer.
On our way to the movies I remember Charissa saying, “I’m proud of you for doing this.” That meant everything to me because even when my family saw me off there weren’t any high expectations let alone any praise. I will remember this moment because I became rooted in this conviction, in this choice that I made to follow the Lord. I found my truth foundation.
We had to head over to the next town over for the movies. There were only two movies playing that night. Though the building itself wasn’t big, the viewing room was bigger than I expected it to be. Although it was mostly empty on a Thursday night. Watching the movie Overcomer was fun. It was such a funny movie and it calmed me. It was a nice distraction from everything that was flying around my head. It was bliss. Later, I was told that while I was laughing one who shall not be named was crying because they were moved by the movie. I guess everyone interprets movies in different ways. I grew up watching the Lifetime Network so some movies just don’t hit me as they are intended too.
After leaving the theater at 9:00pm, the streets were empty and everything was closed. Charissa told me that’s how it was when you live in a small town. While I waited for everyone to stay goodbye to each other I stepped away and took in the stillness. I could hear the Lord starting to speak to me about what my next steps were, “3 nights.” I knew that meant to book an airbnb for 3 nights in Los Angeles. I responded with, “Okay.” Knowing that it meant that I was going to go all the way. That I wasn’t going to turn back nor stay still. I was going to follow wherever the Lord is leading me. It’s like someone you trust is saying, “We are about to do this ‘seemingly crazy’ thing together,” and God has never failed me so I was all in, regretting nothing.
We headed home and turned in for the night. Before going to bed I started booking my next Airbnb’s. I only made bookings that would get me to the Smith’s house. Thank God I hadn’t otherwise, we wouldn’t have had a chance to spend an extra night. Our next Airbnb was only about a 3-4 hour drive so we wouldn’t have to leave first thing in the morning. I thanked God for that as well, and went to bed.
The next day was a slow morning as well. I spent time exploring this town of less than 500 people. I went on a walk where I got these cute photos and I got to see another train.
At noon Scott and I went to have lunch with Charissa at a park. I got the pleasure of going inside her place of work to fetch her. Which was awesome because I got to see her in her work environment and it was also popcorn Friday. When we got to the park I ate my sandwich that Scott made because he is a great cook!
During that time I wandered off on a walk. I can feel an internal struggle happening inside of me. This was the day where I would take a step forward again into the unknown. My flesh was telling me to stay and turn back but I knew I had to go. Still it didn’t stop the kicking and screaming from happening. So I stepped into the presences of God. I’m not sure what I said but I knew that I felt immediate Peace and excitement. God and I were going on an adventure together.
After getting back to the house from lunch I started packing things up and said my goodbyes. Dad and I headed to our next destination which was right outside Salt Lake City, UT. Here’s to taking a step forward.
‘If the Lord delights in us, then He will bring us into this land and give it to us, ‘a land which flows with milk and honey.’Numbers 14:8
Thank you to our awesome host Scott and Charissa Smith. Love you guys! 😁
I hoped you learned something new, felt inspired, or just enjoyed reading my story. Exploration posts come out every other Friday. If you would like to know about my next post please subscribe below. Until next time!
– Olguine Brutus
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