Posts Tagged With: walking with jesus

lessons learned..

Pam’s Journey ~ Day: 355

Miles walked: 999

Miles remaining: 1

Days remaining: 11

Would you believe that I’ve still been wondering if I’m going to finish my 1000? I’ve tried to keep on track and caught up when I got behind but until it’s done, it’s just not done. The last few days have even caught me being cautious that I don’t twist something or pull something that I haven’t already pulled because you just never know. Someone even said, “you’re as good as done”… No, no, no.. Not until I hit 1000 miles will this commitment be met.

Sometimes we do that though. We think we’re done and so we kinda quit. We quit trying. We think we’re “good” so we quit putting in the effort. That’s one of the lessons that I’ve learned on this journey. You’re never done, so don’t quit. Don’t give up on anything that God has directed you to just because it wasn’t as easy as you thought it would be. Don’t decide that you don’t want to put in the work, so surely it’s not what God had in mind for you. Keep at it… at least until God changes your direction.

I’ve learned LOTS of things about me in the last 999 miles. I’m kind of a nut, but I think I already knew that before we started walking. I’m a “prove you wrong” kind of person. Say I won’t and you can bet that I will! I’ve said that I’m a fly by the seat of my pants kind of gal.. but I’m really not. I’m a planner. No matter how hard I try not to be, I am.

I’ve learned that neighbors are more than just people that live on your street. Some of my neighbors (my new friends) have watched me walk this walk. I have several that sit out in the mornings and wave as I go by every day. They were there at first when I was walking in the really really cold – we’re talking 2-3 pair of pants cold…  They have seen me  walking in the rain, walking in some crazy heat, walking in the dark, walking with friends, and always walking with Jesus. They wave, they cheer me on, they have even visited with me and offered me a drink. They are people that I would have never met if I didn’t start this walk.

I’ve learned that when I think I can’t go any further, I can. A little more strength is just a prayer away.

I’ve learned that no matter how much you think you can’t live with missing some TV show that claims to be “reality TV”… you can. You won’t even remember that show that you thought you had to watch, but you will remember the walk that brought you to your knees because God was working so delicately on healing your heart.

I’ve learned that another mile might mean another blister on my heel but it will also most likely mean peace about whatever is on my mind.

I’ve learned that no matter how late it is at night, and no matter how early that alarm is going to go off to get up and walk in the morning, it’s totally worth being a little tired to lay in bed and catch up on life with my daughter if that’s what she wants to do. There is nothing more priceless than her wanting to tell me what’s going on in her life. Those are the times that we share inside jokes that no one else would get but us and we think we’re hilarious when we’re really just two peas in a pod. Those are the memories that I will cherish and smile about when I think of her.

I’ve learned that Thursday is the smelliest day to walk… trash day.

I’ve learned that people will doubt until the very end. I suppose it’s in our nature, or maybe it’s come to be in our nature because so many things aren’t a sure thing. I grew up with a dad that taught me that a man’s word is something you can count on. If he said he would do something, it was as good as done. I like that quality and will always try to live up to it.

I’ve learned that I can literally spend hours thanking God. Hours. The people that He has brought into my life are amazing. The things that He brings me through and the strength that he gives me to handle life is such a blessing. The obstacles that He places when I’m not quite ready for what I have planned for me,  but then He removes when I am finally ready for what He has planned is nothing short of perfect.

I’ve learned that I’m not the person that I thought I was. I had a list of things that I let define me.. I’m a woman, I’m divorced, I’m a 40-year old single mom, a tired out of shape couch potato, an office working, over-weight, shy, homebody with a bad leg that won’t let me walk for long without hurting, so why put myself through that pain for nothing, I’m an unfinished project with no hope of getting done. I could go on, except I’m not those things anymore. I let myself be those things when it was a convenient cover to shield myself from anything outside of my comfort zone. I have held myself back more than any other person could and it’s taken more than a few miles with God to break that shell.

I’ve learned that without that shell of excuses holding me down, I am strong, independent of others but dependent on God, fearless of failure, determined to succeed, courageous to conquer any obstacle that stands in the way of where He leads me, and I am His.

I’ve learned that I’m not alone, ever.

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Warning… Reduce speed ahead

Pam’s Journey ~ Day: 159

Miles Walked: 396

Miles Remaining: 604

Days Remaining: 207

Most would probably agree with me when I say that life goes by too fast. Everything we do is given a time value. Fast food, fast cars, speed reading, speed dating, express checkout or even self checkout when express is too slow.. Everything is better if it’s faster, right? Not everything.. I don’t know any parent that won’t deny that their kids grow up too fast. Life is short and we try to squeeze so much in that we don’t have time to enjoy the things that matter.

I visited my parents last weekend and on my walk I noticed that I was trying to rush. It was a longer walk than my normal and I knew my dad was waiting on me to show me how to change the oil in my lawnmower, then he was going to do the oil in my car, we were going to try and get some time in at the pond, I had hoped to take another ride around the farm on the four-wheeler, and we always play a couple card games together when we’re there. Oh, and I needed to install some things on my mom’s computer, and check her virus software to make sure it’s up to date, and we are getting her set up on Skype, and there is just so much to do in such a short time!

Back to me rushing my walk… I was on the way back of what turned out to be a 4 1/2 mile walk. I was going north with a little wind in my face, heading up a hill when I felt beat. I started pushing myself harder and it seemed like I was crawling up that stinking hill. I stopped. Took a couple breaths, stood up a little taller, and started at it again. And again, that hill was kickin my butt.

Anyone that knows me can tell you that I’m quite stubborn and determined. (I know this about me and I’m a work in progress so it’s all good!) I stopped on that hill again and realized that I was trying to do it all on my own. Here I was supposed to be walking with Jesus and let me tell you that we had some great conversation on that walk. It would have to be one of my favorite walks to date! I appreciated God’s beauty around me, the amazing silence of the country, and I counted out more blessings than I will ever deserve. But here I was trying to climb that hill all by myself. It was like going up a down bound escalator! But He was right there with me.. so why was I trying to do all the work?

I realized I couldn’t climb that hill by myself.. no matter how stubborn I am. I stood there in the shadows of the tree lined road and asked God to help me up that hill.. and all of the hills that I’m climbing in my life. I asked for God’s help with my parenting hills, my job hills, house and yard work hills, friend and family hills, and all of those other things that take our time but we still keep squeezing them in. It’s a good thing there’s not much traffic on that country road because I stood there for awhile until I felt God telling me to slow down. Just slow down. <Deep Breath>

I took a little longer finishing my walk than I had planned, but nothing catastrophic happened due to my lack of rushing! My dad was still waiting to teach me how to change my lawn mower oil. I still got my mom’s computer checked out and Skype set up, we still played a few games of cards, had a wonderful lunch, played a lot of fetch with Beau, and I even took a nap. So, why was I rushing and trying to do it all on my own? Apparently, so I would realize that I needed to ask for help… and that is something that I’m not very good at. The best part is that He helped. I asked, and God helped.

 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.” ~ Matthew 7:7-8

So you would think that this little lesson would have me slowing down a bit… well, it did for about 5 hours. Then on the way home from my parents, I was already making my mental to-do list for the next day. Church first, then I had to get the yard mowed before the monster patch of weeds took over everything, and I wanted to squeeze my neighbor’s yard in too, just because.. then I needed to put some weed-n-feed down to get those monster weeds knocked out, after that I had some flowers that I got last week and never got around to planting, that would require cleaning out the leaves and dead stuff from my flower beds, then I had plans to tackle my desk clutter and my magazine clutter because it’s starting to get out of control again, and I also wanted to straighten up the patio because Beau keeps rearranging it, then pick up the kitchen, living room and bathroom and…. 

Needless to say, I did NOT get my mental to-do list finished. As I was recovering from my first yearly mowing, weed fighting, flower bed cleaning and planting, and the unusual use of manual labor, I fell asleep. Yes, asleep. I have tried for years to take naps on the weekends when I feel like I need to wind down and relax and it just doesn’t happen. So, two naps in two days is unheard of… and exactly what I needed. It’s exactly what He told me to do. “Slow Down.”

Slow down?.. is it really so hard? When I’m feeling beat, I have to consciously ask God to take every step with me. It’s then that I don’t have to work nearly as hard to accomplish my to-do’s. Slow down?.. are all of the little things that we think are so important really all that important? Will something horrible happen if you don’t get your dead leaves picked up or your floor vacuumed for the fourth time this week? Or will it still be there waiting on you? Trust me… it will still be there and the world won’t end because you didn’t squeeze it into your already too packed day. 

My lessons: Ask, and He will answer. Everything is so much easier when you’ve got the Creator of all giving you a hand with your projects and chores. Invite Him to join you in everything you do.. everything. Slow down, it will all still be waiting on you when you get there. To-do’s… I need a shorter to-do list, or maybe no to-do list at all.

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