Lake Tahoe!

While I was driving to Sacramento I passed through Lake Tahoe. I have had many fond memories at Lake Tahoe. My grandparents and I would visit Tahoe every summer for a week. This is what made me so excited to drive through Lake Tahoe on my way home.

This is a picture which I often saw as I  was driving around Lake Tahoe as a child.

The Sierra Mountains are some of my favorite. I love the rocky look.

I love looking at Tahoe as you drop in from the surrounding mountains.

One of my favorite parts of Tahoe is the beautiful sky’s.

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Beautiful Mountains and Foothills.

As I left Jackson I got a chance to drive up the Rockies into Idaho.  It was a beautiful part of my trip.

It felt like the Rockies were waving good-bye as I drove up the pass out of Jackson.

The foothills in Idaho were beautiful to drive through.

After coming down out of the Rockies I was pleasantly surprised by the beautiful hillsides in Idaho.

After driving through the beautiful foothills I was thankfully skirting this part of the Rockies.

Nevada provided some excellent sunrise pictures along my drive.

Drive to Jackson Fun!

I was so blessed to catch up with friends in Jackson, WY that I forgot to take pictures of them. As I drove to Jackson I was so excited to see the mountains beginning. It started with some great mountains which seemed like foothills that I ran into in the middle of Wyoming.

I was so excited to get out of the flat plains and see the mountains in the future but they turned out to be just foothills.

This is the mountain next to me as I passed through an 8,700 foot pass.

I was so excited to be driving into these mountains to see my friends in Jackson.

My friends are truly blessed to have this view of the mountains from their house.

If there is anyone who is in the Jackson, Wyoming area they should check out Cornerstone Church of Jackson Hole. I was so encouraged by my time there and wish that I could have spent more.

Omaha Fun

I really enjoyed my time in Omaha, Nebraska. I was able to catch up with Shanna and experience Omaha. Downtown Omaha is a great place to spend an evening and I was hosted by an excellent family where we enjoyed ice cream pizza.

Check out the cool sky’s which greeted me in Omaha. 

I did not know where the specific border between Iowa and Nebraska is on the Missouri River but now I do.

Looking back at Omaha from Iowa the sun setting behind the city was beautiful.

The bridge from Iowa to Nebraska was beautifully lit up in the evening.

Eyes on the Sky’s

Leaving Knoxville was hard. The weather was kind of miserable in the morning before it cleared up. Overall, I really enjoyed my time praying and thinking as I traveled to St. Louis.

One of the things which I enjoyed on my trip was looking at the cloud formations. Do you remember when you were a little kid laying in the grass and watching the clouds pass over. Today I had the opportunity to look at some of these clouds as I passed through various states. Check out some of these cloud formations and see what different things you may see.

The sky in East Tennessee after the storm.

Beautiful middle Tennessee Sky’s.

Kentucky sky’s provided some excellent views.

I loved the way the Sun was peaking over this cloud in Southern Illinois.

The train of clouds in Illinois was one of my favorite pictures from the day.

Missouri provided amazing clouds also.

Oregon and California Stadium Visits

I was blessed to visit Eugene, Oregon to see the Oregon University vs. California game. Oregon won but it was a good game through the first half. Here is the view of the stadium and of the field from my seat. FYI my seat was 6 rows up from the field.

After the Oregon Game we drove to Fresno, California. At Fresno we were able to go to the Fresno State vs. Boise State game. Here is the view of the stadium and the view from my seat. FYI my seat was 11 rows up from the field.

After the Fresno State game we then drove to San Diego, California. At San Diego we were able to see the San Diego State University vs. TCU game. Here is the view of the stadium and the view from my seat. FYI this was the worst seat that I had it was about 30 rows up from the field.

California Oregon Road Trip

My trip to California has been very long and enjoyable. While I have been here I drove approximately 2,000+ miles from LA to Eugene, Oregon to Fresno to San Diego and back to LA. We began this epic adventure at about 4:30 on Wednesday evening. Bob and I were happy to begin our journey as you can tell in the picture below.

Our initial leg of the road trip included driving through some storms. It was a difficult trip at times but there were some beautiful sights we saw such as the clouds and the scenery.

Mount Shasta was beautiful as we drove. Look at how it is shrouded in clouds.

As we drove through here was the sunset that we saw on the drive.

On our way to Fresno from Oregon Bob got really tired and was able to catch some Z’s.

This trip was such a blessing to me. I am very thankful that Bob and I were able to talk for the majority of the trip. It was a great time of fellowship, practical life discussion, and theological discussion.

Encouraging Words

One of the most encouraging things to happen to me this month was to catch up with an old friend of mine. He first contacted me on Facebook and we were able to talk a little.

Last Sunday we had an opportunity to catch up further. It was then that he told me that the LORD had used me to encourage him while I was at college.

While at Cal Poly we would spend time discussing different parts of the bible. At the time there was some very frustrating because we would talk about different passages and have some very different views. I loved my buddy while at Cal Poly, while it was frustrating to have different views we both were very committed to using the scriptures as our guide.

Now he sees the scriptures in a very similar way. He figured that it would be very encouraging and it was. After this conversation it got me thinking. Why don’t I call people who have impacted me life and let them know different ways that they impacted my life? It only takes a couple of minutes but it can make a world of difference to someone.

Difficulties of Focus

Each one of us has many different things to focus on. There are the usual financial difficulties, living arrangements, car issues, job responsibilities, and relationship issues that everyone seems to be consumed with from time to time. These are all normal parts of life which every individual has to deal with. As I was thinking about this I remember hearing that single people have it easier. From a Christian perspective singles are to be concerned about how to please the LORD while the married are concerned about how to please his spouse (1 Corinthians 7:32-33). The argument normally goes that the single guy or gal has less to worry about and so it is easier for them to focus on how to please the LORD. I have a hard time believing it. I agree that the single man or woman does not have to think about what their spouse would want or need but there are other things which they have to deal with that the married couple do not have to worry about. For instance the single person eventually has to think about someone to pursue or allow someone to pursue them if they are ever going to get married. This will probably lead to them loosing their sole focus on Christ. (At least it is hard for me to do this personally.)

All of this is actually a moot point. Both the married and single are to have a singular focus. Their focus is to be on Christ and his kingdom. Matthew 6:33-34 says “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. So do not worry about tomorrow for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” The Christian’s focus can be divided but should not be. I was recently reminded of where Peter walks on the water in Matthew 14:27-32. Peter saw Jesus on the water and was focused on him. Peter was so focused on Jesus that he asked to be commanded to come to him over the water. Peter then got out of the boat and walked on the water towards Jesus. As his focus waned he saw the wind and became frightened. Jesus stepped in at that point and took hold of Peter and the storm stopped when they got on the boat. We should learn from Peter that what really matters is not what is happening around him but on simply perusing Christ.

During this month I have simply learned that I need to stay focused on what really matters, my pursuit of Christ. That means living out the gospel by evangelizing, discipling, and serving in the church. This was a hard lesson for me to learn but one which was well worth all the pain.

I think that each of us would live a more fulfilled life if we each focused on what really matters. That does not excuse us from work or things which are not enjoyable or maybe less important in the entire grand scheme of things but it does mean that we should stay focused when doing those daily or life tasks so that we can complete them sooner to get back to what really matters.