It’s what we all aspire to, one of our greatest desires. We all want to make a difference on this planet, we were each one of us born to impact, to have purpose.
Purpose that encourages others on their journeys, those that are walked, run, and stumbled upon, up mountainous, gusty, trails and along smooth, bare places too, those traveled along gravel roads on bare feet and those glided easily down through powdery snow with the aid of skis.
Those celebrated joyfully in the light and those trekked fearfully through darkness.
We’re meant to do it side by side. Together.
Encouragement for one another is the greatest gift of love our God has given us for use on our pilgrimage to him. And we are all on a pilgrimage to him, whether we know it or not. Whether we make it or not.
Our God is there with us, calling us to him, making our ways straight, giving us friends along the way for support. If we will have it.
So what am doing to encourage others this day on my pilgrimage?
Am I endeavoring to brighten the lives around me, or am I sucking in all I can for myself, hording it like the last serving of ice cream hidden in the back of the family freezer-or as if I have the only flashlight, as weak as I may feel my batteries to be?
Must I really keep it all for myself?
And what about when it’s hard? When the people I come in contact with are about as malleable as the tin man before Dorothy had applied a little oil to his joints? Those that are so unpleasant in their own stiffness, their hearts seem impenetrable?
Those stuck back off the road in the dark.
And what about the ones who come at me like highway robbers, those intent to take what isn’t offered, or those who put upon me what I don't want, when I am made to carry burdens not mine? When despite my best attempts to keep my eyes on the road, another course is forced upon me, and I must stop or even turn back. What do I do then? Stop walking?
Extinguish my lantern and wait in the dark for the sun to rise again?
The challenge is, at times, as hard and stubborn as the immovable or unmindful soul that needs reaching. But there opportunity finds the sacred. There advancement flourishes. If only we could always be aware!
There supernatural work takes place, light does its thing.
Even when the results are far from what we can visibly see. When delay seems counterproductive. There a little seed spread to be grown along the way under bright nourishment makes a way for resurrection.
So on this rainy, rainy day in Kansas City, when I want to be at home with a cup of hot tea and a good book, I am going to hit the dark, wet streets and remember what my purpose is. I am going to respond to kindness with kindness, and to, well, a lack of kindness, that way too.
Sometimes it will be, oh, so hard. Other times it will be as easy as a big, blue sky. Regardless, a God color waits behind what I can’t see. There light can always be found.
There is no containing it.
Light doesn’t dim because it’s shared. It grows.
Ou dynamic purpose is to be a part of it, to be standing in the light and revealing color, even when it seems dark.
“Here’s another way to put it: You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We’re going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don’t think I’m going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I’m putting you on a light stand. Now that I’ve put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you’ll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven.~ Matthew 5:15-16, The Message (MSG)