Monday, January 21, 2013
In the Master's Footprints
My husband is wrapping up his dream vacation.
Several months ago I asked him where he would most like to travel. I told him to dream as big as he wanted - since it was just a dreaming sort of question. No cost too high, no mileage too far, no obstacles in the way.
His answer came in a heartbeat: Israel.
Hmm. Not my first choice. Sure, there are many things I'd like to see there, but there are also many other places I'd love to visit first.
But tonight, as I reflected on the excitement and joy in his voice as he described over the phone the adventures he's having, I began to understand the difference in our desires.
I'm in a season when mothering permeates every teeny tiny aspect of life. So, if you ask me what I like to cook it will be simple, healthy, hearty foods. Because that's what I make for my family. If you ask what my favorite things are you'd hear answers like sleep, baby laughter, a few moments of peace, watching understanding dawn on a child's face, completed chores.
It stands to reason, then, that when presented with the question of a dream vacation, my mothering instincts will come into play. Israel is not the safest place. I would not EVER desire to take my young children there for a vacation. I wouldn't want both parents to go there without children in case we didn't come back for some reason. It's across an ocean. Etc., etc., etc.
Sure, I've had my twinges of longing to be with my husband experiencing the wonderous things he is enjoying. I would love to take a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee. I would find it fascinating to see a real first century tomb complete with a rolling stone. And oh, the incredible mixture of sorrow and joy when standing at Calvary!
But my mother heart wouldn't do it. I am tied here for now. Someday, I'll hopefully travel again, but not now. Not to places of unrest. And not for two weeks without my children.
Josh's heart is in a different place though. While he speaks of his longing to see his family once again, I still hear the thrill in his voice as he shares about his trip. For him, the trip is not about leaving home and going somewhere else. The trip is about understanding his Master more fully.
Josh derives joy from being where Jesus was. From experiencing a few of the same things as his Lord - even if it's just weather, sights, and smells. He is like a servant who loves his master so much that he cannot help but be amazed to walk a step behind, placing his feet in the same prints left by the master's sandals.
My husband's perspective is right. He does not need to visit Israel to prove to himself that Jesus is real, or to truly believe the Bible. But because of his dedication and love for the Son of God he cannot help but desire to go where he was, see the land that is beloved of our Lord, and gain a richer, fuller, deeper understanding of the Word.
Oh, that my heart would be in that same place! Because even here at home, I can thrill to walk a step behind my Master and serve Him however He enables. That goal will not hinder my mothering heart in the least.