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Not All Who Wander Are Lost



I’m having fun in the forest like I did as a kid. I’m forging trails through our acreage just for the delight of seeing the wildlife use them too.


I thought it would be cute to name the trails—not that the deer and squirrels can read, but it sounded fun. For easy sign material, I used beach driftwood since there’s plenty around. As I was beachcombing for the right-sized signs, I picked one up, but when I turned it over, I was shocked to see it was already painted with the words:


Not all who wander are lost


It looked a bit weathered and had drifted in from who knows where.



I held it and remembered….


During my twenties my mother saw me wander from plan to plan. It wasn’t that I wasn’t willing to work hard, it’s that most of my plans were not destined to succeed. Some could say I was wandering and appeared to be lost.

As I started my thirties, my husband and I settled into a successful plan. Our wandering seemed to have led us to where we could finally settle down. I’m sure Mom was relieved.


It wasn’t long after this that she got cancer. Before she died two years later, she knew we were no longer wandering.



But then it happened, and we wandered once again—selling our large home and moving into Mom’s 600 square-foot log cabin. To those who were watching, we seemed lost. Who does that?


We did.


We were happy wanderers—especially wandering to the place where Mom had lived—near the beach and surrounded by trees. Would Mom have thought we were crazy for doing what we did? I’d never really know because she was gone.


So, when I picked up that sign, I smiled and thought of Mom. I don’t know much about heavenly messages, but I did have the sense she approves of our wandering and knows we aren’t lost.



Morley McCall: April 10,1934-August 9,1991

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