A girlfriend I’d been wanting to know better called and asked if I’d like to get together.
Maybe go for a walk.
“Hmmm, what does that mean?” I asked suspiciously.
“Well, we could go for a walk and talk,” she replied.
Like it was a normal thing to do!
This is not a good idea, I thought.
I hadn’t exercised in a long time.
I don’t own yoga pants or exercise clothes.
The closest thing to a walking shoe I own is a pair of Reeboks that I bought for an aerobics class I never went to in 1998.
But I really like this woman and wanted to spend the time with her. It’s just walking, I figured. Surely I can walk!
Just to clarify, I asked, “What does that look like? Where do we walk?”
I admit I started looking out the window, hoping to see thunderstorms rolling in, but alas, clear skies.
“How about we walk around Reed’s Lake?” she said.
Reeds Lake is a small body of water in the center of Grand Rapids.
I only knew that because one of my favorite eateries was settled on its shoreline.
Maybe I could divert her inside.
Another long pause on my part. Finally, “How far around is that?” “Just 4.15 miles.”
The fact that my friend knew it was exactly 4 point 15 miles should have tipped me off that she was a practiced walker.
“We’ll go slowly and if you get tired, we’ll stop,” she offered.
“Okay, sounds fun,” I lied.
I put on a pair of grey sweatpants that were actually old pajama bottoms and a T-shirt, laced up my venerable shoes, and set off to meet my girlfriend.
At the parking lot she designated, skinny women in spandex and ponytails trotted by.
Nothing on them jiggled.
I rolled my eyes. What was I thinking?
My friend spotted me and waved. It was too late to retreat.
We walked and talked and walked and walked and walked.
I had to admit that it felt good to be out in the fresh air.
And it was delightful to hear what was happening and exciting in my new friend’s life.
Except for being lapped by the gal pushing a baby stroller
and having the snot scared out of me by a sneaky runner whose approach was so stealthy that when he said, “Excuse me, coming through,” I jumped ten feet in the air, screaming, it wasn’t too bad.
If my muscles haven’t seized up by tomorrow, I might just try it again.
How about you?
Is God inviting you into something new?
A new experience or new friendship?
Why not say yes and see where it takes you!
Scripture refresher: Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. (Hebrews 10:24-25, NIV)
Prayer: Father, I ask you to gently lead us into our futures. Lead us toward great friendships and new experiences. Protect us from ruts and rituals that prevent new growth and keep us from the rich life you offer. Amen.