What lies beyond the bend? What mystery does the curve hold?
I love to walk in circles… not the circles that have no purpose and indicate frenzy, but the ones that take me on a circular path, ones that bring me home by another way. Two years ago I started walking on a regular basis to prepare for the 10k event in the Bluenose Marathon, an annual event which has a charity challenge component. As I gained in strength and endurance, I expanded my walking zone, it became an ever widening circle in the neighbourhood that I both lived and ministered.
A year ago, I moved out of that neighbourhood and into my present one. There is no circular route to walk, we live at the top of the hill on a dead end street. The only suitable walking area is the trail up behind our home, but it’s not a circle, it’s straight, I have to return the same way I came.
I resisted walking the trail for a long time, condemning it without experiencing it, using it as an excuse to not walk. And yet, over the summer, something changed in me. No, I still don’t like having to retrace my steps, I would still prefer it if there was some way to make a circular route, but something in me shifted. Without the need to be cautious of traffic, I was able to enter into an almost meditative rhythm, something I couldn’t on city streets. And for the first time since I was a young teenager, I walk a pathway that is more or less wild, one that is unscripted and untended by human hands.
There is an abundance of foliage and greenery on either side of me and I have become fascinated at how much it changes from week to week as one plant comes into season and then another. Each one beautiful in its own way and setting and often a glimpse of something up ahead will lead me onward. Like the morning I thought I saw a large dog just around the bend… and it was these!
The reality is, this straight path isn’t straight, no path is, even the straightest ones curve around the surface of the earth. We never know what lies just ahead when we look through the window in God’s world.