The Wonder of the Wander

by MitchellRichards

I don’t know a lot about energy and momentum, but I assume it takes more energy to get something going than to keep in going.

The same is true with life.

It takes more energy and effort to start from a dead stop than to coast through towns, ignoring traffic signs and pedestrians.

Why is it that whenever if envision myself in a literal journey through life, I always picture in the dense woods?  Why can’t my journey be on well-lit highways or some McDonald’s Play Place?  Why is it that the journey of life takes place in something far more dark and mysterious?  Why is it that there are no paths in my visions?  No guides?  No cell phones?  Why do I never have a handy machete to chop down the brush in my face?  It’s bad enough to have no idea where I am going, but to not be able to see adds a whole new element.  Why is it that in my visions I am seen wandering around, traveling in circles?  Why is it that, upon reaching my destination, I see Jesus standing outside of a homemade hut and never anything spectacular?

As a child, I once had a dream of two doorframes.  Each doorframe had no door, and both were placed about ten feet from one another in an endless white space.  I would build a door on one frame, and walk over to the next and begin building a door there, and as it was being set in its place, someone would run in a complete circle and break down both of the doors in the process.  The dream lasted a long time, and I can still hear the sound of the person running through the doors sometimes in the sound of silence.  I think I see life this way; a constant building of doors and covering my tracks, even though the doors lead to nothing and someone will always be there to break them down.

I like the wandering around in the forest.  I suppose it kind of sucks, because I have no idea where I am going, but at the same time I am going somewhere.  I think in the end of this journey I will find Jesus standing by His little hut and He will invite me in for bread and wine.  I imagine we will watch a short film about where I will be off to next, and I think he will hand me a parka or something and tell me I best get going.

Somehow…in some weird way…I love that about Jesus.  I love the fact that in reality I will never be done wandering.  I will never be done getting pissed off about being lost, and I’ll never be done wandering from hut to hut to find the next destination.  Some people see their journey with God as a race, others a relationship, and some see it as a side-by-side stroll through the park.  While all of those suit them just fine, I like my vision a little better.  As Helen Keller says, “Life is either a great adventure or nothing.”  I see my journey with and for Christ in the same way, a grand, never ending, always changing adventure.  Like a puppy in a new home, everything is new and everything is interesting.  The more you wander through the wild, the more you cross paths with other people on their journeys.  Some will be headed in opposite ways, but hopefully we will all have time for each other’s stories.  Some people will be defeated, sitting against a tree; others will be broken down, waiting for help.  It is our job to find these people.  And while we bounce from hut to hut thinking that they are the destination, Jesus smirks every time we swap stories with another journeyman, or to place a hand on the broken.  We are all in this together.  We are all wandering around with aimless purpose.  The journey is not about the hut-to-hut adventure, but it is in between point A and point B that the motivation for point B to point C comes from.  Even though we catch up with Jesus at the huts, it is really between the points that we find Jesus.  It is between the points where we see Him more clearly and understand Him more dearly.  It is between the points that Jesus’ face becomes meshed with the faces of our brothers and sister, our friends and enemies.  Our journey through the wild is our destination to grace.

I say the journey never ends, but I guess that in the end, the ultimate goal is Jesus saying, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”  But even then, as the journey of life comes to an end, I want to begin a new journey.  I don’t know what it will look like, or what jungles it will take me to, but call me crazy…I think the pursuit of Jesus is much more fun than actually finding Him.