I joined a group of girls, ladies, I still like to think of myself as a girl; we resolved to weigh in every Friday; two have lost upwards of 50 pounds; one has lost maybe 4 or 5 pounds; me, I still hover at the same weight, nothing lost-nothing gained! No matter how many cookies and pies and cakes and chocolate I consumed over the holidays, I am still right back where I started! I have wanted to lose 20 pounds forever it seems; to be fair, I have lost around 7 or 8 pounds in the last year or so; but in truth, it doesn’t seem to make a whit of difference in my appearance or in my self-image. I am attractive, healthy, and I might even go so far as to say pretty … when I dress up and look the part! But looking the part, acting the part, and feeling the part are very different things!
Am I looking, acting, and dressing up as a Christian? I feel the part, Dear Lord, when we talk together; I enjoy our time as I wander through my thoughts and You guide me into Your truths; I can write the part; I can talk the part; but … am I?
Losing four family members in the last five years has had a profound effect on my outlook on life, death, heaven, and eternity. This is not a weekly weigh-in with You; it is not something I can see, touch, or measure. My feelings, my beliefs, my longings, my hopes, my faith are intangibles that can’t be felt or measured because it, well, it just can’t! How, then do I know all this between us is real? How do I know You are there with me, with us ALL? How could one young man walking from home to home, village to village, desert to desert, mountain to mountain, sea to sea make such a difference in the lives of people for over two thousand years?
Jesus was a walker; He walked without assistance of shoes designed to cool, support, absorb shock, or cushion. His paths were not paved; there were no comfort stations; fast food and 32 ounce drinks along the way didn’t exist; direction signs and exits had to be interpreted from the paths taken before Him; bandits and thieves were not rounded up, handcuffed, heads gently protected from possible harm when entering the squad car.
I looked it up; the widest point around the earth, the equator, is considered approximately 24,874 miles; before His ministry it is believed that Jesus walked a little over 3,000 miles; during Jesus’ three years of traveling, talking, and preaching, some think He walked almost 18,500 miles! My math tells me that adds up to a possible total of 21,500 miles-the distance around the equator! Now, there is no way I have walked anywhere near that many miles in my sixty plus years of living. I’ve never talked about my faith for three years straight!
Jesus’ dedication to His Heavenly Father demonstrated His faith as something others could see, touch, measure! Would that I could have walked along His side listening to His teaching through parables and life example! But, honestly, could I have physically kept up? No, I don’t think so! Jesus walked the walk and talked the talk, as they say. But never could it be said of Him that His time on Earth produced nothing lost-nothing gained!
I think I’ll go take a walk; I think I’ll talk along the way; this soul of mine is not lost; I’ve gained that which can never be taken away from our time together, Dear Lord; nothing lost-life eternal gained!
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made. In Him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. John 1:1-5 NIV
In the Garden C. Austin Miles 1913
I come to the garden alone,
While the dew is still on the roses;
And the voice I hear, falling on my ear,
The Son of God discloses.
And He walks with me, and He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own,
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.
He speaks, and the sound of His voice
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing;
And the melody that He gave to me
Within my heart is ringing. [Refrain]
I’d stay in the garden with Him
Tho’ the night around me be falling;
But He bids me go; thro’ the voice of woe,
His voice to me is calling. [Refrain]