A couple months ago I saw a picture of a guy on top of a mountain with a beard full of icicles and wind burnt skin with a caption that said celebrate discomfort. I thought that was pretty profound. A little over a month and a half into this little adventure of ours and we are finding that though I (Tyler) quit my job and we get to travel to cool places, we did not make our lives any easier. Picture perfect sunsets and mountain top snapshots are only a small portion. We actually made our lives much more difficult with more decisions, camp setup and teardown, hot and cold days, and the always elusive shower. So no, we did not embark on this adventure to stick it to the man and to get rid of all modern conveniences- we love those things! But for us to get to the places we want to get to and to meet the people we want to see, we have to embrace the chaos. We have to press into the challenge, acknowledge the not-so-pretty side and celebrate the discomfort.
Although this new lifestyle is unique, I think that more often than not we all have seasons of discomfort. Awkwardly strained relationships, seasons of uncertainty and confusion, illness and disease all penetrate our lives at some point. But I think in some weird way we need these times. They remind us of the beauty of it all. When we get out of the comfort of our little neighborhood, or out from under the blanket and wander down unfamiliar paths, choose to open new doors and get outside, we discover what else is out there. It is often uncomfortable, maybe a little awkward, but I’ve found it’s always worth it. When we step out into discomfort we discover new things about ourselves, about the world and we gain a new appreciation for our creature comforts. That cup of coffee tastes so much better, your bed so much warmer, and when you can gather with your people the time seems so much sweeter. I think, just maybe, it draws us into a deeper delight of the fullness of life.
We are just wrapping up a short few weeks catching up with friends and family in Grand Rapids, MI. It has been a joy to be back with our people and enjoying some normalcy again. But after this weekend we hit the road, and this time for several months. The nerves and excitement are setting in, and we are getting ready to say goodbye to some creature comforts for open roads and new trails. In a few days we head for the Northeast to Nova Scotia. Hoping to find beautiful sunrises and new surf breaks. Goodbyes are hard, but when you know that there is something out there for you, I think you’ve just got to go for it, no matter how uncomfortable or scary it can be. So cheers to the open road and the next adventure.