This post originally appeared on BaptistNews.com in August 2016.
In all my planning for our section hike of the Appalachian Trail last week, I apparently only read the blogs that talked about the incredible views I would see along the way. Mountain peaks and rolling hills. If folks wrote about their physical maladies and emotional challenges hiking the trail, I clearly glossed right over it.
We approach life the same way sometimes, don’t we? Anticipating the vistas. We focus our energies preparing for the successes, the celebrations, the beauty. Framing the snapshots we hope will tell the story of our journey. And that’s a good thing.
But if you’ve lived much life at all, you know the days will also come when you find yourself trying to walk with throbbing, blistered toes wrapped in black duct tape, certain you can’t take another step. When you wish your leaky bladder was a personal hygiene problem and not your water reservoir running out with 2.4 miles still to go. When you wander defeated in the blustery rain at the top of the mountain, unable to find the path down to the road.
To my friends who are on some rugged sections of the trail of life right now, concerned about what is over the next ridge, carrying a pack that’s far too heavy, I offer these words for the journey. Read more…