I meagerly followed Shawn, Maile, and their 4 children’s journey cross the United States via their blogs, but that didn’t prepare me for the internal struggles they dealt with day in and out as they shared in their new book, “How to Use a Runaway Truck Ramp.” Trips are never just about the places to visit, the scenic routes one takes to check another location off the list. In a very rambling post podcast I posted back in June you may recall that I have some very strong opinions about traveling reflecting more of our past struggles, present lives, and future dreams, than travel is about the destination.
Shawn and Maile’s back and forth reflections of their 10,000 mile trip, written in a blog style format, bring to light the questions many of us ask in our day to day journeys; theirs being more enhanced by backdrops of New Orleans poverty, and the great depths of the Grand Canyon. As Shawn questions his ability to make a living as a writer and to follow the path he feels faithfully called, Maile expresses her frustrations with parenting on the road and questioning her faith in God’s protection.
The book is a leisurely read with some visually written inspirations of their physical journey, heartfelt pleas for God to answer their prayers in some form, and soul stretching calls for not only themselves, but each of us to look deeper into ourselves to see beyond the mundane numbers that may drive our 9-5 choices. Throughout each post, I found myself questioning my own motives for my career choice and path, wondering where my gumption was to finished my memoir once and for all, and wondering how in the world they are able to work past their trust issues with God. Their questions are some of my own.
The Smuckers journey across the U.S. is a great read if you love travel, have an inkling to pursue a dream, and are raising a Christian family. I wish the best for them as they plant their seeds in a new area of Lancaster and continue to seek after some of those unanswered questions.
If you would like a Kindle or Paperback version of “How to Use a Runaway Truck Ramp” by Shawn & Maile Smucker, please leave a question for me, Shawn, or Maile regarding travel, pursuit of dreams, and/or family. One random person will be selected to win a free copy of this new book by the end of this week.
Shawn Smucker is the author of How to Use a Runaway Truck Ramp and Building a Life Out of Words. He lives in Lancaster County, PA with his wife Maile and their four children. You can find him on Twitter and Facebook, and he blogs (almost) daily at shawnsmucker.com Maile blogs at mailesmucker.blogspot.com