What a night hike to see the lava can teach you about sharing your message


Five of us set out on the three mile hike to see the active lava flow on Hawaii’s Big Island from the Puʻu ʻŌʻō Vent. ’ – at night.

Our plan was to walk to the lava field in the late daylight hours so that we could be there at dusk and be off the lava before it got too dark.

But the three mile hike that should have taken us 40 minutes turned into a 4ish mile hike (we are still in debate as to the actual length of the walk – some say it was more like 5 miles).

As we walked, rainbows popped up everywhere.


And as with all rainbows, rain is nearby.

Soon the rain caught up and followed us along our walk.

Fully drenched, we finally made it to the slippery, uneven, crack filled, scree covered lava flow – and it was getting dark.

I wondered if this might not be the safest thing for the two ladies in our group in their 60’s to do.

Tom kualii

I looked out to the potentially treacherous lava field, turned to Linda, the eldest of our group and said, “Do you think you still want to do this?”

Without hesitation she said…

“I didn’t come all this way NOT to do this!”

The impact of her words shook me to my core.

As we set out over the iridescent lava field, I could hardly concentrate.

Her words still lingered…

“I didn’t come all this way NOT to do this!”

We navigated the jagged, bumpy lava.

And got to a viewing place where we could see mother’s magma spilling forth.

We took our time to fill up on the immense beauty of molten lava flowing and flaring down the mountain.

lava tom 2

We all wanted to stay a little longer and soak up this once in a lifetime moment.

But, decided to get headed back as the final light of day faded.

Soon after we started back we bumped into a woman who was in deep fear.

She said, “I’ve lost my husband and sons. I need to get back to the car. But I can’t see very well and I’m struggling.”

Just then, her angel appeared.

One of our companions, Alan, stepped close to her and took on the tone of voice that one might take if they were talking to a scared animal.

I wasn’t close enough to hear his words but I could tell that whatever he said – it soothed her.

He took her hand and guided her, ever so patiently, back to safety – gently speaking words of encouragement all along the way.

This entire experience made me think of YOU!

You see, I know a little something about you.

I know that you have an IMPORTANT message to share.

I know that you will CHANGE lives.

But only if you let yourself do it.

Which is why I’m writing to you today.

Because when it comes to life’s challenges, like hiking on slippery, uneven lava at night or getting your message out there…

You can let yourself slip into fear.

You can come up with the myriad excuses of why you can’t do it.

You can convince yourself that it’s too dangerous.

You can tell yourself that where you want to go isn’t all that different than where you are now.


You can do what our friend Linda did.  You can show your mind who’s boss by saying…

“I didn’t come all this way NOT to do this!”

And if you choose to not let fear take you out…

You can rest assured that your angels (sometimes in human form), are going to be there along the way.

Supporting you.

Guiding you.

Making sure you stay safe.

Because let’s face it…

You came here with a mission!

You have a purpose!

The world needs you right now!

And it needs you to step up and go for it!

Yeah, you might twist an ankle.

You might biff it on the “rocks” of the stage.

But on the other hand…

You might make it.

You might get the exact support you need.

You might experience something you never have before…

You might help people in a whole new way.

And,  if you’re lucky, you might be living your truest purpose by sharing your gifts and your message with the world!

I’d love to hear from you!

Pop a comment below and tell me what message you’ve been excited to get out there.  Or tell me what’s been holding you back.


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Special thanks to Tom Kualii Extreme Exposure photographer for his amazing lava pics! Click the picture below to check out more of his incredible work.

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