The Journey

The picture on the card captures it so perfectly. A dock stretching out to a body of water, the beginning of the dock clear and easy to see and walk on, but the farther you get the harder it is to see the end — it is covered in mist and there is no way to know where exactly it stops and the water begins….

It took us a bit over an hour to get to the retreat center. Stop.Go.Stop traffic had us initially in despair but once past the lights and congestion of the city we sped up the highway and arrived in time for dinner.

I was tired. It didn’t feel like retreat time. My body ached and the sustained pressure in my mouth from newly installed ‘invisible’ braces created a dull pain that spread from my mouth to my head.

We arrived with all the other people who were stuck in traffic. In the crowded front entrance of the mansion turned retreat center, as I looked around at both new and familiar faces, it came to me we had all come to this place because we are on a journey. A journey captured in the card my friend handed to me.

A journey that may start easy but farther on it is difficult to see where we are going. Or a journey that starts out with fear and suspicion but ends up in safety and greater understanding.

That’s what this walk of faith is – it’s a journey. We, a people who love end results and don’t like process, a people that dismiss others and ourselves when we don’t live up to the low standards that we have set, find that irritating at times, at other times downright impossible. But process and journey are critical to my, to our, understanding of God. I am at times curious and at other times apathetic, at times angry and at other times in love with God, at times suspicious and other times safe, but always in process, always on a journey.

And on this journey there are times when I want to dream, but I’m too tired; I want a vision but my eyes are full of tears; I want fresh passion but I’m too busy eating stale bread. I am, as CS Lewis says so well “far too easily pleased”.

Despite this, despite all my frail human ups and downs, inconsistencies, even hypocrisy I have come to believe that God has invested in this journey at great cost. He somehow believes I am worth it – somehow believes you are worth it; that wherever we find ourselves today, He is present watching over His investment.

Where are you on the journey today? Is the dock covered in mist or can you clearly see the way?

journey, faith
Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you. Deuteronomy 31:8