Pause for thought: Walking
Like many people I have done a lot of walking over the last few months. We’re very fortunate to live on the edge of the countryside. In this time where we have been so limited in where we can go and I have been spending so many hours every day at home in front of a screen, walking has been essential to both my physical and mental health. Unless the weather is very bad I go out every morning before work. I am enjoying seeing small changes in the environment every day as we move into spring, as things start to bud and bloom. It’s good to see real people too, and say a hello to the same people I pass every day (at a distance of course!). We live on a hill so wherever I walk at some point I have to go up hill. In the morning I usually choose to do the very steep upwards part of the walk at the start. It really is steep, and it takes quite a lot of effort; it doesn’t seem to get easier even after all these times of doing it! If I look to the top of the hill while I’m walking it is very daunting, it looks so far. If I concentrate on the bit in front of me, I know if I keep going, putting one foot in front of the other I will get there. Walking up that hill has become a bit of a metaphor for me for coping with the season we’re all in. It reminds me that the bible talks about perseverance, about keeping going even when the going is hard work. I am also reminded that there is someone always walking beside me – God’s promise in Deuteronomy 31:8, which Paul refers to in Hebrews 13:5 is “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” And so I take encouragement to keep going, knowing God is always with me.