Just for today, I “traded in” my wheels for my feet.
By the time I had finished Your “To Do” list for me today, Lord, the sun was close to setting. A little too close for me to embark on my normal bicycle ride. So I decided to walk instead.
Timing is everything… Amen? Today was our coldest day of the year so far. A high of 58 degrees! Yikes !!! Brrr!!! (It is Florida, after all!)
I bundled up in my long johns, fleece jacket, wool hat and gloves… and took to the streets. Reasonably confident that my decision to walk would also pay off in a marked reduction of any potential wind chill.
OK… Northerners might call me a wimp.
I can live with that. 🙂
Besides, this walk is also my small step (no pun intended) in the direction of Cross Training — training in more than one activity to improve my overall fitness. I sure do enjoy my bicycle rides! But maybe an occasional walk will be good for me.
Turns out, my decision to walk paid off in other ways, too. For one thing, I could also see a lot more. Even more than my natural eyes could see… because my heart was focused on You, Lord.
Wispy clouds decorating the sky — like carefree brush strokes in the hand of a master painter. The Master Painter.
The sun making its last fiery declarations of the day before fading to a glowing ember on the horizon. An ember that was already bursting into flame again on the other side of the world.
A half moon rising overhead in the waning afternoon light, playing its daily game of “Sun Tag.” As if chasing a friend it knows it will never catch. Funny how it never gets tired of that game.
Water lapping ever higher at the edge of our lake, thanks to the deluge of rain dumped into it by yet another “dry season” storm. Defying normal weather patterns because You made a promise, Lord. That You would pour out Your Spirit in this region. And we would know it when we saw the lake waters rise.
I was almost around the lake when I suddenly felt led to take a left turn. A short, slightly uphill detour that only added a little distance to my walk. Or so I thought.
As I headed uphill, my focus turned to the road itself. Mostly, to the twigs scattered on it by that same recent storm. Evidence of mini-landslides, driven by the force of mini-floods, when the rain came down harder and faster than the ground could absorb it.
Up until now, the scenery had been bright and beautiful. Isn’t that how Life is sometimes?
Now I was seeing another side. Isn’t that also how Life is sometimes?
That’s when I spotted it. The Gift You had placed in the road for me, Lord. The Gift I would not have seen if I had not taken the detour. The Gift that made sense of everything else my eyes had been taking in.
Two twigs… settling together, as their mini-flood receded, in the shape of a cross.
Your Cross, Lord.
Reminding me of Your abiding presence in every aspect of Life.
The Light in the day, delighting our hearts and guiding our steps.
“But for you who revere My name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays. And you will go out and frolic…” (Malachi 4:2)
The Light in the night, watching over us and never sleeping.
“He will not let your foot slip — He who watches over you will not slumber… The Lord watches over you… The Lord will keep you from all harm — He will watch over your life… both now and forevermore.” (Psalm 121:3-8)
The Living Water that cleanses us from the inside out and quenches our soul-thirst.
“It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the Water of Life.” (Revelation 21:6)
The Terrain we travel, even when it’s uphill.
“Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil… Jesus said to him, ‘It is written’… ‘It is also written’… ‘It is written’… Then the devil left Him, and angels came and attended Him.” (Matthew 4:1-11)
Caressing us with beauty. Inviting us to trust. Wooing us to love. Challenging us to grow. Equipping us to fight.
“Be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes… Take up the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” (Ephesians 6:10-20)
Cross Training of a different kind… right, Lord?