Every spring, thousands make their way to Springer Mountain, Georgia, to begin a more than 2,000 mile hike to Mount Katadin, Maine.
The percentage of those who actually finish, the Appalachian Trail, however, is low. In fact, many drop out while hiking the access trial to the initial starting point. Those who continue usually find they must discard much of the paraphernalia they thought necessary: heavy tents, clothes, food. Any item that’s not absolutely necessary to completing the journey. Otherwise the weight will weigh down the person’s physical shape and in turn affect their emotional fortitude. Hiking the trail is more mental than physical.
Since the inception of time, thousands of believers have walked the trail to heaven. All who begin finish, but many grow discouraged along the way, leading them to temporarily get off the trail or become emotionally and spiritually drained. Fortunately, they have many cheerleaders. All those who’ve made it are cheering them on from heaven.
I’ve never hiked the entire Appalachian Trail, but my daughter and I have completed the Foothills Trail that runs along the South Carolina/North Carolina border. On one such five day trek, we discovered we had taken too much. While we didn’t discard anything along the way, we determined we’d pack lighter in the future. Fifty pound packs make walking cumbersome—especially when hiking up steep peaks.
Many things can weigh me down as I attempt to live the Christian life. What they are, I discover through experience. When I’ve discovered them, I’m wise not to pick them up again and to stay away from anything or anyone who might encourage me to.
These weights may be sins or simply innocent things that get in the way of me serving God fully. Either way, they must go if they hinder my spiritual journey. God is perfectly willing to help me put them away; I must simply ask.
What weights are slowing down your spiritual journey?
Prayer: Father, at this moment, we let any hindering weights fall so we can run well our race for you.
Encouraging Tweets: God is perfectly willing to help me put the weights away.
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