Hubby went hiking for the first time in a long time. The day was nice, with the temperature close to 60 degrees F. Getting a warm, sunny day in February is rare so he felt he should take advantage of it. Before he left, he told me the general area of where he was going. He took along his Spot, a device that can send his coordinates to me so I can track him or send help if he needs it. No solitary hiker should be without one.

When he arrived home not long before sunset, he had quite the tale. He’d hiked toward a rock formation we call Gettysburg. He and our son took me there many years ago, so I know the general area. In the intervening years, a storm went through and knocked down a lot of trees. To hike in there requires a lot of work stepping over tree trunks and around root balls and so on. In other words, it’s not fun to hike there, and you can easily hurt yourself. But he wanted to find Gettysburg, so he kept going.

He never got there. The trek was wearing him out so much he decided he needed to go back, but the return trip would be just as tiring and as treacherous as getting there. As he started back, he noticed some deer not far away and decided they knew the trails better than he did. He followed them. When he got to where he’d first spotted them, it was a place clear of downed timber. He followed them as they went. They led him through hazard-free areas back to a hill that he knew. He walked to the top the hill and found the trail he started out on. When he turned to look, the deer were still waiting on him to follow them, looking at him like ‘come on, let’s go’. He said he was very grateful he followed them because they led him out of a bad situation. I asked Hubby if he thought they were angels guiding him, and he said no, they were deer. But I think yes. Someone was watching over him and led him safely back.

It reminded me of the time our son got lost in a sudden snowstorm when he was out hiking alone. He normally can find his way around and out of anywhere, like he has a GPS in his head that shows him the way. But that day, the snowstorm totally disoriented him. He couldn’t find the trail he needed to get back to his truck. He was lost and shaking uncontrollably. Hypothermia is very dangerous and one of the worst things you can do when you have it is to go to sleep. He said he was so sleepy he could barely stay awake, so he sat at the base of a rock wall and took a nap. The miracle is he woke up again. He didn’t know how long he slept but when he looked around, there was a hole in the rock. Somehow, he knew he needed to crawl through that hole. When he got to the other side, he went a very short way and found the trail he’d been searching for and made his way back to his truck where the heater warmed him. Later that spring and summer, he went back a bunch of times looking for that hole in the rock that saved him, but he never found it. He even got Hubby to help him in his search. He knew where he got on the trail and there were rocks but no hole to crawl through. They never found it.

I’m positive two miracles saved my son. The fact that he woke up after falling asleep with hypothermia is a miracle. That hole in the rock that led him to the right trail was another miracle. I still thank the Lord for those. I wouldn’t have my son or grandsons without God’s intervention that day.

I think miracles happen, but we may not realize it. A decision or event that changes our plans might be God’s way of keeping us from unknown danger. We don’t know about it because He kept danger away from us. If we hadn’t changed our plans, something bad might have happened. Prayers of thanks for keeping us safe are always appropriate, along with prayers to keep us safe. It’s the power of prayer.

The Lord shall preserve your going out and your coming in from this time forth, and even forevermore. Psalms 121:8

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