Friday, March 01, 2013

morning walk

Dusty and I just got back from our morning walk and I am reminded, once again, of how those moments are a spiritual discipline. Oh, I have never seen this as a chapter in a book on disciplines, or heard it in a talk or sermon, or shown as part of a power point presentation, but it is for me and it may be the one that I practice most often.

Part of my appreciation for this discipline is the fact that it gets me up and moving - out of the house or office, away from the TV or computer, off my duff and onto my feet. Another reason is because it is that time when I can have a conversation with God, while journeying through this marvelous gift we call creation. But mainly, it is because of what I learn while walking Dusty.

I know as I go through the day, that my encounters with others can often be viewed as interruptions; that I can greet people with a grumpy face; that I can begin to fidget after about 20 seconds as if I have something far more important to do or be.  But not Dusty. He greets people with unconditional acceptance, and his wagging tail is that signal that he is more than delighted to be in the company of another.  He patiently receives whatever gift they have to offer, and gives his love without reservation. He will spend as long with the other as they need, and never look around as if they are detaining him from an appointment.

With Dusty, I am reminded of how important it is for me to stay tethered to Jesus as I walk through life. Oh I can, and usually do, convince myself that my route is better, that he must certainly be wrong in wanting to go in that direction, that the smells and temptations and longings are just across the street, if we could only go there! But with a gentle tug, I can be led to those green pastures. I know that on my own, I can get into more trouble than even I dare imagine, but if I listen to that Voice, gently and lovingly calling me back, I can find those still waters my stressed out life needs.

And when, at the end of our walk, and I am set free, I hope I can run eagerly, joyfully, and expectantly


© 2013 Thom M. Shuman

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