Written by Cynthia Word
You don’t turn fifty every day. But this baby of the family is still spoiled at 50 and that family of mine treated me to a trip to Hawaii to celebrate my milestone.
My beautiful niece goes to college on the island of Oahu and since my daughter and I would only be on the island for a week, my niece offered to be our tour guide and activities director. She took the job seriously! She had a week full of wonderful activities planned for us, making sure we saw all that the island had to offer.
Day one was a hike to Ka’ena Point. What a great choice for our first experience. The path wound all along the rocky coastline, the aquamarine of the Pacific crashing and spraying below us. It was truly picturesque and we stopped frequently to capture the beauty of our surroundings on film.
At the start I had tremendous energy and was so happy to be spending time with my sister, brother-in-law, daughter and niece. But then we kept walking…and walking. I asked my niece how far our final destination was and she pointed to a concrete tower in the distance. It seemed minuscule! She assured me it would all be worth it. So on we marched.
Halfway along the hike, the path got narrow and quite rocky. The only grace I possess is the grace God gives, and at one point I slipped and came down hard on a rock with the palm of my hand leaving a bruise I would sport for the rest of the week.
I hadn’t been prepared for the distance we were walking and my stomach started to growl. A few minutes later, I started to growl along with it. Fortunately my brother-in-law had been wise enough to pack some trail mix and he willingly shared what he had. His sharing may have been prompted by self-preservation. As the only man on the trip, he knew one cranky woman could have a dangerous snow-ball effect!
Finally, we reached a fence that divided the path we were hiking. There were two gates and brushes along the ground to wipe our shoes. The brushes were to rid our shoes of any dirt or debris we had picked up along the way that might contaminate the other side of the landscape.
We had made it! And my niece was so right; the labor had all been worth it. We didn’t see them at first; we had to continue walking down to the beach. There, in a little protected cove, lay five monk seals. Black and shiny and fat, they were adorable. Most were asleep in the sunshine, but one was awake and frolicking in the shallow water. I could have stayed in the moment forever, basking in the glory of all the God had created in that place.
Later that night, as God often does, he reminded me there was much to learn about life’s journey through my experience along the path to Ka’ena Point.
Trust your guide.
Deuteronomy 31:8 The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you.
Find encouraging companions and BE ONE
1 Thessalonians 5:11 Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.
Enjoy the journey, knowing there will be moments of beauty along with moments of pain
Ecclesiastes 3 There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens. A time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance.
Share what you have
Hebrews 13:16 Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.
Keep moving forward, pass through the gate. All that awaits us will be worth the effort and faithful following. The dirt and debris on this side of eternity will soon be wiped away. Heaven will be more glorious than we can ever imagine!
John 10:7&9 Therefore Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved.
1Corinthians 2:9 But, as it is written, “No eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him”
Most importantly, tell someone else about the path
1Peter 3:15 But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you
This blog post has been used at Ignitewomen.com with permission of the author. “What I learned on my hike” has been posted on The Manorwood Cafe as well.