A random memory dropped into my mind recently of a four-day hike my sister and I did in Lesotho about 30 years ago with a group of friends.
It had seemed like a fun idea before we set out out. For the first few miles we had laughed as we shared funny stories and made up silly songs to keep up morale.
By day two though, it was starting to get a bit much. My whole body ached and frankly, I was bored with the scenery, which at first had looked so beautiful, and now stretched on and on, relentless and seemingly unchanging, giving the impression that we weren’t getting anywhere.
Sadly, I was so consumed with reaching our final destination so that I could rest, that I couldn’t enjoy the beautiful mountain scenery or the camaraderie of my companions.
The thing is, if I had only grasped the truth that I was going to reach my destination eventually, perhaps I could have enjoyed the journey, instead of pushing myself so hard. Looking back, I think “if only I’d taken time to pick some mountain flowers to press, taken more photos of the stunning scenery, and revelled in the quiet beauty of the place, away from all the rush of life.”
Does Your Christian Walk Currently Feel More Like a Hike?
Jesus came so that we would have abundant life! (John 10:10) Our Christian walk is so much more than being headed for a final destination- it’s about enjoying the journey, in partnership with Jesus. We’re going to reach our destination anyway, it’s a promise, sealed and held in surety for us!
It struck me this morning, that life can sometimes feel a bit like that hike. You may be experiencing a time in your walk with God where it feels more like a hike than a walk, and where the scenery just does not seem to be changing; you put your head down and plod on, praying that God will bring the change, only to lift your head again and see what looks like the same scenery. You just don’t seem to be moving ahead.
Perhaps your road seems too rocky and hard to push through?
Like me on that hike, we can become so focused on getting to our final destination that we forget about the importance of the journey – the wonder and awe that I, little old me, am walking in partnership with the King of Kings! How quickly we start to question God’s goodness, when the terrain becomes tough or unchanged (to our liking.)
We can so quickly forget why we’re actually on this walk- that it’s not actually all about us but about reaching others; touching other people’s lives with the truth of the Gospel: Ephesians 5:15-16 “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time…”
Here are three great truths about our walk with God, that I remind myself of if I’m tempted to start complaining about the “scenery” of my life or circumstances:
You are not walking on your own
God has you firmly by the hand: Psalm 139:10 even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me.
Psalm 23:1–4 He leads me beside still waters. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; .
God Has a Road Map for Your Life
God isn’t lost. He knows what He’s doing; you can trust Him to do it! Psalm 139:16 You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.
He Has Empowered and Equipped You For The Journey
God, the Lord, is my strength; he makes my feet like the deer’s; he makes me tread on my high places. Habakkuk 3:19
He made my feet like the feet of a deer and set me secure on the heights. Psalm 18:33
In both of these scriptures the original language is translated as “he enables me to negotiate the rough terrain.” God has equipped you to walk confidently over the roughest terrain, not in your own strength, but with your hand firmly in His.
Enjoy the journey, with Him.