Monday, April 23, 2018

Enjoying the Journey - Martin Wiles

Your life is a journey you must travel with a deep consciousness of God. 1 Peter 1:18 MSG
Our journeys were carefully planned, each with a destination in mind.
For several years, my brother and I made monthly hikes in the mountains. We’d always get an early start. But my brother and I enjoyed the journeys in different ways.
For my brother, the journey was about reaching our designated ending point, getting back to the vehicle, and getting home within a reasonable time. I went along with his idea because he was along with me. My idea of the journey was different. Had it been up to me, I would have enjoyed the journey more by not focusing on the destination point—to say we had hiked so many miles or that we had hiked from point A to point B—but on the journey itself. Stopping along the way to enjoy the views, to identify wildflowers and trees, to read some of the area’s history.
While our hikes were good exercise—and helped me keep my weight under control—I’m afraid we missed the joy of many journeys because we focused on the exercise or our destination point. I’d love to go back and do them all over again . . . a little slower.
Life is a journey too, as Peter says, and should be traveled with a sense of God’s presence while I’m taking the journey.
Like others, I’m looking forward to my retirement destination. But I don’t plan to sit in a rocking chair on the porch or recline in my recliner all day when I do. Being caged in the house for five days with a bout of the flu was enough to let me know I don’t plan to sit around when I retire. That’s simply the end of one journey. I plan more—but maybe not ones where a boss dictates what I do each day.
Nor do I plan to retire from God’s work. Neither does He want me to. God’s assignment for me may change numerous times during my lifetime. I’m learning to enjoy the journey of each assignment rather than looking for a completion point.
God has many lessons to teach during our various journeys. Working simply to get through with the task causes me to miss the important and beautiful things along the way.
Don’t focus so much on the end of your journey that you miss the beauty of the journey itself.

Prayer: Father, help us to enjoy the journeys You send us on—not merely to long for the end. 

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