When people heard of my plan to walk forty days on the Appalachian Trail they were interested. They were curious. They humored me. I had camped but never outside a campground, never carrying a backpack and never alone. What? Alone? No Not alone Had I not read the reports? Had I not heard the warnings?
My response initially was that there are bears and boars and snakes and rabid things and bad mouse droppings and lunatics and treacherous trails. There are terrorists; I still fly. Surely I would bring a gun or a dog or a man? And, they secretly began to hope that I would not make the hike.
Corrie Ten Boom wrote in her book Hiding Place that she read Psalm 91 daily while in a German concentration camp. My friend read Psalm 91 daily while her son served in Iraq. They did this because they believed in the ever-present Emmanuel God. I adopted Psalm 91 and told the worriers to pray for feathers. I carried a feather over my shoulder attached to my pack, for protection. "He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart." (Psalm 91:4a New International Version)