A Day of Surprises

HikeItForward-Final-MediumI love a day of surprises and the last two days have been full of them. Yesterday, I was in my office minding my own business when an envelope from the advancement office was delivered. I am always excited when I get mail from them because it usually indicates that someone has given to my hike project. There was one surprise gift for $1000! Diane – you are the best sister ever!

At the end of the day, I left work to hike home, donning my hiking clothes and backpack. Walking out the front door of my office building, I noticed the Dayton Christian High School baseball team practicing. Being a baseball coach in another life, I can hardly pass by a game without pulling up a seat and watching for several innings. Even with just a practice going on, I could not help slowing down and observing infield practice. All of a sudden I saw the shortstop throw up his hands and yell, “Hike it forward!” and then another player joined in, “Hey Dr.D. on the A.T.!” I threw my hands in the air as well and gave them both a whoop!

Turning the corner and walking in front of the elementary entrance, I came to the playground where a dozen younger students were testing the strength and durability of some of our monkey bars. Glancing over toward the activity, a little girl was waving with smiles of recognition – I waved back and she provided me an even bigger grin. A friend nearby said to her, “that’s the guy who is hiking the App Trail” (I think she may believe that I am traveling on my iPad via some sort of app). Another little boy asked, “Are you back from your hike?” I slowed my walk in order to share that I was just practicing and had not left yet.

ShirtI am so happy that the students are embracing my hike and taking some time to say “hi” to the old man who looks rather homeless, scary, and even intimidating.

I got home from work at Xenia today and found that two gifts were delivered for me at the Miamisburg campus. Cathy brought them to the house. One was in a gift bag and the other was a card. In the gift bag was a generous financial gift, a beautifully encouraging card and the coolest T-shirt. The shirt has a picture of the Appalachian Trail with the words Appalachian Trail, Georgia to Maine 2,180 miles/3,508.4 km. What a thoughtful gift – one that has now become my favorite hiking shirt! The other gift was an envelope from a married couple who have been longtime friends of Cathy and me. The personal remarks were so encouraging to both of us. An enclosed check was an amazing gift toward the hike. God is so faithful as His people respond in generosity.

Categories: Appalachian Trail, Backpack, Dayton Christian, Hiking, Local Hikes, Students, Support | Tags: , , , | 6 Comments

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6 thoughts on “A Day of Surprises

  1. This is such an uplifting post! I love it!

    • Thanks for the encouraging words! I really like your blog as well – the recent piece recounting your riding session with Sur was interesting – I even watched the videos – quite a nice touch.

      • Aww well thank you so much! My husband and I just got back from camping (post to follow!) and I told him all about your AT fundraising plans. Quite inspiring. We are praying about sponsoring you! Thanks for watching and reading my post. 🙂 I am new to this thing, so it is exciting to have feedback. God bless!

      • I am looking forward to your blog about your recent camping experience. I am amazed at how each hike or overnight is filled with unique elements. Even though I may have hiked the same trail a dozen times, I can always count on something crazy, or wonderful, or surprising filling the experience.

        Thanks for your interest in my hike for the students and for praying about a possible sponsorship. I am honored that you would even consider helping. I know God will lead you in this decision.

  2. so adorable.

    • Piney Power – Thanks so much for the comment and for following this blog. I will be plugging into your site as well to discover what’s happening in your part of the world.

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