Oh the inexpressible joy of standing fresh-faced and lovely at the dawn of the journey surrounded by others in the newness of their own.
Stepping out and moving forward. Light-hearted conversation flowing between, around and amongst the travelers just excited to be there and counted among those traveling.
Excited to be on the road and going somewhere maybe…finally…for the first time ever.
How smooth and wide and light the first miles seem to be. How good and noble and right it is to be headed in a new direction…with so little need to turn aside distracted or disrupted because… the new is good.
So on I go, for hours and days and miles only cautiously becoming aware that the road is narrowing and even upon it’s easiest terrain some, who not long ago joined in the journey, have already turned back or turned aside quickly, hobbled by unseen enemies. Others, not used to any weight upon their shoulders or the strain of steady walking for any length of time, became easily bored and slipped away, enticed by a different light… heeding a different voice.
Engrossed and in spite of fewer and fewer beside me, I stand only momentarily to choose between crossroads. Beloved companions give way to an easier route with promises of a lighter load and the hidden deceptions of false light and personal glory. Others, stumble and fall into unseen traps laid upon the highway, now refusing to rise and carry their cross any further…refusing to take hold of the promise that lies ahead.
His voice is the only voice I hear. His Light is the only light I see. Heavy-hearted and weary, I know I must continue on without them because… I can carry no one.
There are days like these when the road seems endlessly lonely and the view of the horizon is obscured by the haze of hard living and the weight of walking upon the cursed soil.
There are days when the voices of those who know and heed the Voice of Truth are few and far between.
There are times when it’s harder to hear, but His voice, the voice of God, is still there….you simply have to want to listen.
You simply have to choose.
Joy is revealed, it is learned and discovered… in those moments along the narrow way, when the haze lifts and you find there really are others walking steadily beside you; a remnant remains. And God is there in each of our eyes!
We remind one another of that very first day we set out to walk…whenever it was… we share from the common cup of community and continue the journey spurred on by a crowd of by-faith-and-yet-unseen witnesses who went on before.
Along the way, we learn the simple truth:
it it’s not about the speed,
it’s about the endurance
and we never walk alone.
Called forward and onward and upward and always a little bit higher than the day before, we walk on until our race is over and we reach our journey’s end….or is it the real beginning?
Until then, we gather along the road to commune and encourage. We eat the bread, drink the cup and some of us…here… we write and record the reasons for remembrance, extending the invitation to others.