Sunday, July 03, 2005

It's about the Destination, not the Journey

The first thing I would like to do today is to ask you all to pray for some people. I read an article about a current event in the news involving a kidnapping and homicide case. This case, after reading it, is very close to my heart. This little girl, Shasta Groene(8 years old) was kidnapped and held with a registered sex offender for 6 weeks. Her brother, Dylan (9 years old) is still missing and the rest of the family was found murdered in their home which included her mother and another brother as well as an unrelated man in the house. This is close to my heart for 2 reasons. First of all, because this little girl is breaking my heart. Shasta has been through literal hell and she is going to live a life of torment knowing that she is alive and her family is dead and/or missing. She has had (most likely) unspeakable things done to her and my heart hurts for this littl girl. The other reason that this is so close to my heart is that the man who is alleged to have done all of these horrible things, is mentally ill. He is sick and a poison to society. I have a very strong feeling about sexual predators and I would like for all of us to agree in prayer to have this man put behind bars again where children are not in harms way. This man's name is Joseph Edward Duncan III and although it is only alleged, he is proven to be a sex offender. I am terrified for the children that are in his general vicinity. Please pray for little Shasta, Dylan and for justice to be served. Now, onto my post....

This morning in church we talked about Revelation and about what Heaven holds and I got to thinking about the journey versus the destination. I really don't like being couped up in the car for several days however that is what I had to do to move to California. I have a car and I didn't have enough money to have it shipped with my belongings so I had to take the road trip to move out here. Granted, I had good company on the way and saw many beautiful sights but there is no pain like the pain in your rear after sitting in a cavalier for hours travelling through nowheresville, New Mexico. Although I generally speak of the road trip as an excellent experience, it was annoying also.

If I had focused entirely on the journey of 9 states in 4 days, I might have not seen all of the great things in between and certainly would not have been able to call it enjoyable today. That really does completely parallel our life on Earth in regards to our life in Heaven. The destination in my case was Costa Mesa, California to Vanguard to experience 2 of the best years of my life and meeting some of the greatest friends I would ever have and then onto Newport Beach where I live now in my excellent job and have so much more to look forward to. In our lives, the destination is Heaven. Complete and total communion with God and continual living in His presence as well as the numerous other blessings that Heaven will hold. (A perfected body is my favorite)

Now the journey for me was a grueling 4 day car ride, 3 nights of staying in cheap, nasty hotels and bad fast food all the way. My rear was so sore from sitting that every stop felt like a breath of fresh air. The food was horrible for me and I probably gained 5 lbs just doing the trip. Gas was expensive and we had to fill up a million times obviously. At one point in Missouri, there was a hail storm that did damage to my cute little cavie and I was so mad. At another point, we were driving through Arizona, New Mexico, and Oklahoma which basically look like the same state but in different degress of hell's temperature. In other words, the journey wasn't quite as great as pulling into a sit down restaurant with palm trees all around it in Barstow, California knowing that I had arrived.

That is what I am going to attempt to compare Heaven and Earth to. Earth is not a fun journey. It holds anger, bitterness, hurt, shame, pain, grief, exhaustion, financial hardship, broken relationships, divorce, abuse, molestation, murder, (see above) and my personal favorite discrimination. There are a number of different road blocks, hail storms, and hot temperatures to make us very uncomfortable on our way home. It can be grueling and at times, it looks like we will never get there. My hope for today is that we will stop trying to make this journey more bearable and just rest knowing our destination. There is bound to be hurt in a world that is living literally for the enemy. When we start to look at our destination and view it as an opportunity to grow each day in that direction, we will get there much faster and with more peace and joy on the way.

As I drove over the California state line, the drive was worth it. I saw the "Welcome to California" sign and the state flag. I saw palm trees and smelled the awesome smell of sea air. I got into Los Angeles and viewed the beauty of grafitti and not corn stalks. I saw the many different colors of people all around me and smiled at the beauty of God's creation. I felt amazed as I could not see a tractor anywhere and I realized, that journey was all for a purpose. It was to get me to the great state of California where I would grow into the woman I am today. Thank God for the journey and keep your eyes on the destination. Much love to you and please pray for Shasta and her family.


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