Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Hiking Through by Paul Stutzman - REVEIWED

About the Book: (from Revell Publishing)
A life-changing journey begins with a single step

After Paul Stutzman lost his wife to breast cancer, he sensed a tug on his heart--the call to a challenge, the call to pursue a dream. With a mixture of dread and determination, Paul left his job, traveled to Georgia, and took his first steps on the Appalachian Trail. What he learned during the next four and a half months changed his life--and can change yours as well.

In Hiking Through, you'll join Paul on his remarkable 2,176-mile trip through fourteen states in search of peace and a renewed sense of purpose. Along the way, you'll meet fascinating and funny people, experience trail magic, and discover that every choice we make on the path has consequences for the journey. More than that, you'll come away with a new understanding of God's grace and guidance--even in the smallest things.

My Thoughts:

Paul Stutzman begins his journey on the Appalachian Trail asking the question, “Are you in control of events God, or do things on earth just happen randomly?” (p. 70) He begins this journey after watching his wife do battle with cancer for four long years only to be taken home to heaven. He determines to walk the trail “…as if [God] was trudging along beside me.”

The 2000 plus miles are filled with people and experiences that are both difficult and pleasurable. All along the way Stutzman is challenged and continues to seek after God and the answers to his questions. The answer that comes to him is plain, and his obedience is evidenced in the very writing of his story. I laughed and cried with him, rejoiced and sorrowed with him, and at one point even considered taking such a journey myself. (well, only mildly considered it as I have vowed never to sleep outdoors again in my lifetime)

In a way, we are all on such a journey. Life can be considered a one-day-at-a-time-till-the-Lord-calls-me home Trail. None of us knows what adventures, relationships, hardships, blessings, struggles and challenges lie before us on the trail of life. What we do know, is what Stutzman learns on his journey: the Lord is coming soon and He wants us to be about the business of living for him regardless of our circumstances.

This is a GREAT book! One I highly recommend to everyone who wants to look at their life through a new lens. The author prayed that God would place a copy of his book in the hands of people who needed to hear its message. I am one of those people, and my heart has been touched and changed by his story!

About the Author:
  Paul Stutzman is a former restaurant manager who left his career after his wife's death from breast cancer. He hiked the Appalachian Trail in search of peace, healing, and freedom. His passion and mission is to share what he learned on that remarkable journey. Paul grew up in the Mennonite church. When he is not hiking or on a cross-country bike ride he makes his home in Berlin, Ohio.

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