Homer, Wanda, Ida, and Fanny are a new breed of adventurers, willing to throw caution to the wind and follow God wholeheartedly. This family of 4 with their dog and bird in tow faced down the wilderness to pursue Jesus.
Bored with the mundane, they left their lives of extreme outdoor camping and audacious adventures seeking new challenges. Their thirst for the thrill of following God in faith drove ever onward. Soon they entered the high risk and financially demanding world of staying indoors, sleeping on real beds and eating regularly. A world that would require all their razor sharp skills to navigate.
Our intrepid band of pioneers have spent the past 2 years living in a small motel room. Their favorite pastimes of hide and seek and capture the flag replaced by standing up to the verbal assaults of drug-dealing pimps and former convicts. Adapting to the confined quarters, Wanda began leading an online prayer call for Canada while Homer has been dutifully preparing their online presence. Both have been judiciously crafting the story of their adventure, Wilderness—How to Marry Jesus in 10 Years or Less, into readable prose.
There are times in our lives when words just seem to slip out. Not that we want them to but nonetheless our mouth has a way of betraying our heart. We saw a great deal of this on our homeless journey. Often, people we met would boast about how kind they were to the poor; or how they walked with God. Though not our goal, our presence triggered these expressions. We would then have to observe the God deflate their inflated impression of themselves. When this happened we soon learned how to duck and cover, for the unrestrained 'self' would soon charge. Not every encounter was as brutal as this one but they came close.
Wilderness - How to Marry Jesus in 10 Years or Less
We took the taxi van over to the church and were dropped off on the front lawn. Wanda and I went inside to see if we could speak to a pastor. The pastor was cordial and after hearing who we were and where we came from, agreed to speak with us. We sat down to chat under a mural of Jesus beckoning Peter from the boat in their large conference room. We told him we didn’t know exactly why we were there but had been directed by the Lord to at least inquire. He told us outright that God had been speaking to him about not judging and instead to know people after the spirit. The pastor, who was not from the island, listened to our testimony and could clearly see we knew the Bible extremely well. We shared our walk of faith and our plans to have land as a refuge for God’s people at some time in the future. We had a very cordial and meaningful discussion. Afterwards, he wanted to make a phone call to a friend who owned some land and thought there might be a connection for us. When he came back it was obvious that he had failed in his ‘not judging’ lessons. He said there was nothing more he could do and that they needed to close up the church for the day. He also referenced the numerous times that the police had been called on our behalf and if we had not done anything wrong the police would not be involved. His wife, an islander, arrived soon after and was about as friendly as a rabid wolverine. She wasn’t making any attempt to disguise her hostility. She too made it very clear we needed to leave. The long arm of slander and lies had once again reached out to smack us down. In doing so they invited God’s judgment on themselves as the very thing they were being told not to do; they did. We learned, once again, that God will judge us on those petty little boasts that slip out of our mouths in moments of weakness.