Monday, August 22, 2011

Thinking about the journey

For most of my nearly 55 years I have tended to view life as a series of destinations, weigh stations, rest stops and arrivals. Only recently have I begun to see that a significant part of life is the journey itself. Perhaps I am just a slow learner, or, perhaps, it takes a few years of hanging out in destination-ville to discover that the fun part was usually the anticipation, planning and journey that got me there. When I read the Gospel I find this same kind of strange journey mentality. Jesus seems to always be on his way somewhere (he doesn't not seem to just wander about much) but many of his miracles happen on the journey -- when he is on the way to doing something else. I used to call this the "ministry of interruption" but am  more inclined to think these days that the interruption was just another part of the journey.

I'm not quite up to John Lennon's "life is what happens when you are making other plans". Because even the making of plans is life, and being interrupted is life and actually taking the journey is life and, there are even a few destinations before we hit the road again that are life, indeed.

I am struggling to see my spiritual journey in the same way. I am not sitting around waiting to go to heaven. This journey of faith has profound value all by itself. I am beginning to understand C.S. Lewis who once wrote that "even if there were no heaven, I would still be a Christian because of the benefits in this life." Being a Christ follower on the journey is in and of itself a benefit. The journey is a benefit. The process and experience and knowing Jesus is a great benefit. And, some day, I will be with Jesus. Being with Jesus is not "going to heaven" it is heaven. . . . or so the journey this far would suggest.


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