Ok. Let’s make this clear from the beginning.
I don’t like walking.
I’d rather drive. Or take the bus. I’d love to have a segway or a scooter.
In fact, if forced to walk, I might decide not to go at all. I’d sooner just abandon my plans and do something simpler and more convenient for myself. I’d much rather give up then even get started at all.
At the same time, I’ll be the first to admit that my aversion to walking is due to a combination of laziness and lack of persistence. There’s no good reason for me not to like walking. In fact there are plenty of reasons for why I should walk more!
That’s part of what makes this year’s theme so challenging. To walk on. Because to walk on presumes firstly that you (and I) are already in motion. Walking forward. Walking with Christ. Walking in the light. Walking with the Spirit. And then to walk on encourages us to persevere, engage, and face the road ahead.
This year let’s get walking – a deliberate act of moving forward with Christ. Going where he goes, doing what he does, and discovering that a life of loving God is not passive, but a daily act of deliberate love.
Usually, I imagine walking as simply a means to an end. It is the cheap form of transport that gets me from point A to point B. In actuality, walking is not just a tool: it is a process in its own right.
Too often in life we’re rushing from place to place. Either racing the clock or too focused on reaching the destination. But seeing Jesus’ life, we discover that the joy of life is in the journey. Sometimes the places of greatest impact happen on the way, not just at the end. In examining Christ’s life, we see that he was often on the move. And if you notice, the disciples, teachers, and friends often tried to get him to hurry up and get to the destination. But for Jesus the walk was just as important as the destination. Discovery happened in the journey.
In the first half of this year we’ll be looking at the life of Jesus – in particular taking a look at his movements. Walking on water. The calling of disciples. The healing of the bleeding woman. The tax collector in the tree. The life of Jesus in motion.
Appreciating the journey doesn’t mean that we forget the destination. Like the Israelites who were wandering in the desert, they kept moving forward because they held onto the hope of the promised land. In fact, the promise of God keeps his people moving forward.
For us, our destination is secure – our eternal destination is with Christ. That gives us hope to walk on, no matter what our current circumstances will be. Knowing our destination reminds us that part of the journey is the process of transforming ourselves. We will be spending some time this year talking about the times when we are walking in the wilderness, walking in exile, or walking in despair. In times when we’re too tired to move, where do we find the strength to Walk On?
Every day most of us will do some walking. Walking to a restaurant. Walking between meetings. Walking around the office. Walking to the bus stop. Walking in your house. Walking to school. All those walks are times with Christ. Let the space between destinations become daily steps with God. Discover that walking daily means walking in the moment with Christ. As we cultivate the spaces, we’ll discover that those “in-between times” are some of the most precious.
Let every walking moment be an opportunity to be surprised by God.
Let’s love God with all our heart, soul, mind & strength, and love our neighbour as ourselves.