I cannot overestimate the value of getting away. Jack and I just returned from a great trip to Alaska with my brother Steve and my dad. We spent 8 days exploring the Kenai penninsula, angling for trout and salmon, panning for gold, hiking on snow covered trails, wondering at glaciers and just plain having fun. I just got through reading a book that my friend Pete gave me called, "The mission, the men and me". Its by a fomer Delta Force commnder. I was expecting a war story book, but its so much more than that. Its a valuable book on leadership. One of the points that the auther, Pete Blaber, makes is that all good leadership and problem solving requires those "eureka" moments of discovery. But those moments are impossible without a process of discovery. The process he calls the saturate, incubate and illuminate cycle. You have to be able to saturate yourself with context and information about your mission, you've got to allow time to incubate or think about what the issue is and only through the first two steps do you reach the illuminate or the "eureka!" stage. This is remarkably similar to our walk with Jesus, time spent just being is so importnat yet so much of the church is characterized by busyness, with lots of activity but so little "Eureka!" momnets. Sometimes it takes an investment of time and money on a trip to a far out place like Alaska, to sit by a river, to have no agenda, to cut the chords of the electronic world...all with the goal of the "eureka!" moment that provides context for the rest of life.

And personally this was a reconnecting trip. This was the first time that my dad, my brother and I had done anything like this since I was a kid. It was a special time getting three generations together. My son, Jack landed his first salmon which put a permanent grin on his face.

One thing a trip to Alaska does for me, it makes me want to go back, the beauty, the wildness, the tranquility definitely stirs the soul and makes you long for more.

I suspect there is a part of heaven that will look alot like Alaska, more glorious than what we have here, but it sure is a good preview.

Oh...what was my "eureka" moment, well its hard to say, but I think that I realized what I knew all along is that I have a great dad, brother and son and that is a blessing.


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