Staring up the path, three more miles to go. After hiking all day a last push remained. Running low on commitment I questioned my choice to spend this winter weekend in the wilderness. Would I make the ridge before dark?
I felt discomfort.
I ran a quick list of optional activities. Netflix, hot tea by the fireplace, reading in my recliner. Shoot, even Christmas caroling sounded good. They all seemed more entertaining at that moment.
However, I remembered the difference between entertainment and adventure is discomfort. Entertainment seeks to maximize comfort. Adventure seeks to make discomfort worth it.
Two hours later I crested the ridge and took in the view. It didn’t stop the pain in my legs and lungs but the scene took my breath away. Mountain meadow, two deer taking a quiet drink from the creek, snow reflecting the sunset. I found the hikers hut and made camp for the night.
Tired. Cold. Sore. The day had cost me everything. Yet, as I sipped my hot tea by the campfire, a deep sense of satisfaction settled into my soul. The discomfort of the day had been worth it.
So much of my life is spent in pursuit of comfort that entertains. But, it is the adventures, the (dis)comfort which often produces the best results in my search for Shalom.
~ Pastor Kirk