A Christian’s heavenly journey with his feet on the ground. Treasures shared that are discovered along the way.
Please note that this blog has now moved to: "Senior Eagle walking with Father"

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Committed to Follow

Dartmoor is almost on our doorstep. It's one of the few real wildernessess left in England and it was my ambition to walk across it from north to south. I researched the route and reckoned it was achievable in a day, provided I was adequately prepared.

I set out on a fine summer's day, booted and fully equipped with Gortex waterproofs, map, compass, and rucksack packed with food, drink and emergency kit. The archetypical hill-walker, looking the part and ready for anything?

I soon eased myself into a relaxed stride, drinking in the familiar solitude around me. There was a long way to go, so I was careful to conserve energy and pace myself. After an hour or two I descended to Plym Head and looked around for a way up to the ridge above. A prolonged scramble and I was standing on the top by Boulder Rock, surveying the scene. I was at a watershed between two vast catchments. Stretched below in front of me was the real wilderness area. It was completely unknown to me, with no marked paths, rough going, with treacherous bogs and mires that can swallow up whole stray cattle.

This wasn't just lines on a map, but the real thing and although I was excited, I suddenly felt very much alone and scared. Thoughts went through my mind. "Would I have enough strength, how will I find a way, will I get lost, perhaps I should turn back while I can, it's too risky on my own?" This was decision time. I dismissed the doubts and fears. I was committed to this and if I was going to be true to myself and the desire within, I had to go on. Through the haze I could just make out a faint point in the far distance, that could be the line of the old quarry rail track. I fixed a compass bearing on it and stepped down into the unknown and passed the point of no return.

Step by step I descended into the valley, picking my way through the rocks and skirting the bogs and potholes. All the way I didn't experience a single diversion or wrong move. What followed was an unforgettable walk through stunning wild scenery. At the end of the day, well before sunset, I sat on a low wall feeling very tired but fulfilled, waiting for my son to come and pick me up.

If we say we are a Christian, surrendered to God, then He will be looking for a deliberate commitment to following Him into the unknown. During our life there will be challenges to our commitment There may even be a deliberate defining decision, that will be pivotal to the rest of our life. It can be frightening to step into what seems unknown, but we have His Word and His promise to be with us all the way.

"Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him and he will do this: "He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun." Psalm 37:5-6 New International Version