There is no better way to start the day than on the walking path. The day has just begun, fresh and new. Being late October now, the fresh, cool, autumn air enlivens my senses and gives fresh energy. August was so hot and humid, so oppressive...we slugged through our time together.
The walking path serves many purposes for us. For one, it gets our blood pumping, my sluggish low blood pressure up, clears the fog out of my brain, changes my perspective, joyous fellowship with my six year old daughter and my God, a time of thankfulness, a time of quiet, an avenue to enjoy all He has created. On the highway of life, we often don't stop to pray, to contemplate, to rest, to adore, or to listen.
Alejandro, using a pseudo name here, is one on the walking path of life. He is my mom's age and he walks four hours everyday, which I find amazing! I thought I was doing well with our 40 minute daily walk. Alejandro grew up in Puerto Rico and was raised by his grandparents. His grandma birthed 21 children and she lived to a ripe, old age! His grandparents raised him and his many aunts and uncles on hundreds of acres of their own land. They grew everything, had farm animals, and barely shopped at the market. No wonder his grandmother lived so long, she was always working and caring for others-she had purpose. How delicious it must have tasted to eat fresh fruits and vegetables daily, to breathe in clean air, to run free through the countryside, and to grow up in such a large family. Alejandro's grandfather was killed in a freak accident by a bicycle, so sad and tragic, and what a loss to his grandmother. But still, she plugged away in life because many needed her.
Others that come along the path are also interesting. Many Muslim women dressed from head to toe, jogging or walking along the path. I wondered how they did it in that hot, humid weather of August. Or the older Polish couple that limps along with their dog. Her husband is very quiet but she always stops to say hello and ask my daughter how her learning is coming along. Then there is the man from Mexico, ten years older than me and he jogs that path for two hours straight, never stopping, always greeting me with a smile and laughs...saying the same thing everyday, "your daughter looks exactly like you, mini you." Another walker is a man from Poland with his Chihuahua....I talk his ear off as we pet his dog....he nods and smiles but I don't think he has any idea of what I am saying. But nodding and smiling is universal, he is kind to listen.
We have formed a bond in a way, we look for each other and greet as the day is just waking up. Always smiles, always hellos. A bond is formed, we are in this together. All different, but all enjoying the beauty and quietness of the walking path. Reminds me of the sitcom that used to play, "Making your way in the world today takes everything you've got. Taking a break from all your worries, sure would help a lot. Wouldn't you like to get away? Sometimes you want to go, where everybody knows your name, and they're always glad you came. You wanna be where you can see, our troubles are all the same. You want to go where everybody knows your name."
God didn't create us to live in isolation, He created us for community, for fellowship, and for serving one another, and most important---being connected to Him. He created us to enjoy peace, tranquility, holiness and wholeness, and to live with gratitude for all He has done. There are the ones along the path that are hard to serve, but they are still on the path. The two women complaining all morning as they walk, I often cannot wait for them to pass since I am on the path to enjoy the quiet of the morning. Or the three women walking and talking with such hostility, not sure what they are saying since I don't understand their language, but I wonder "why do they start the day like that?" Or the couple that starts their day with a cup of coffee and a very brisk walk...they always seem rushed and stressed, planning the many tasks of the day, I don't think they notice all the beauty around them. I have to fight off hectic myself, life is so busy carrying many demands! This world is in desperate need for focus, focus on what is important, focus on relationship with their Maker. We need to pray, to focus, to fight for it, to seek Him, and to listen. I enjoy my mornings, do you? I hope you find time in your day to be in close fellowship and communion with Him on your walking path of life.
Jesus tells us: “Ask and it shall be given you; seek and you shall find; knock and it shall be opened to you: For everyone that asks receives; and he that seeks finds; and to him that knocks it shall be opened.” Matthew 7:7,8