Is Your Life a Destination, or a Journey?

May 24, 2012 | 23 comments

If life were only about the destination, what would be the point in being where we are, right now?

On the hard and scary days, I need to persistently ask myself that question. I’ve whispered that one question in the most impossible places: hospice rooms, hospital lobbies, funeral parlors. I’ve had to ask myself that question on the days when I’ve been worried sick, scared out of my gourd, or just plain stubborn.  

The answer is always the same: Life is a journey, headed toward a destination. Life is not an end unto itself, or there’d be no point in being here at all. 

See now: Did you feel that breath you just drew into your lungs? Take another one. And this time, feel it deep, would you?

That was God’s blessed assurance that He’s got plans for you, friend.

I remember it now, that day-long road trip along the rugged coastline of Maui years ago. I journeyed along a winding, wiggling, worm of a road with my husband and his family. The trip along the Road to Hana is considered a must-see on a Maui traveler’s itinerary. So we took that drive. We wound our way past jaw-dropping beauty: verdant rainforests, plunging pools, dramatic seascapes and waterfalls. But the journey was also fraught with pesky bugs, rough roads, hairpin turns, and carsickness.

All the tourist brochures will tell you that the journey is called the Road to Hana. The Road, it seems, is the attraction. No one calls the trip “Hana.” It’s the Road to Hana. The road has a purpose greater than moving travelers from one place to another;  the road itself carries its own magic.

I don’t know what your journey is. I don’t know what kind of hairpin curves you’re navigating in this life. I don’t know what your big thing is … the one that looks intimidating, or downright impossible. But I do know that if we keep our eyes open, we will eventually see true beauty. We might have to wait until we see it around the next bend, or when we glance back in the rear-view mirror.

But let’s both trust that it is something worth living for.

 

by | May 24, 2012 | 23 comments

23 Comments

  1. Jennifer

    Thank you,again, for the beautiful blog. I may have to read it daily for a few awhile, as a reminder.

    Reply
    • dukeslee

      Thank you for coming by, Jennifer. Have a great weekend. 🙂

      Reply
  2. Duane Scott

    In light of my recent news, I needed this today.

    Thank you so much.

    Reply
    • dukeslee

      I am so sorry about your news, Duane. I read your post, and my heart breaks for you. I hope that God gives you clear direction on what to do next. So sorry, friend.

      Reply
  3. Shelly Miller

    Great reminder that this life is about the journey, not the destination. And if I am living in the moments of today, they will tell a good story tomorrow.

    Reply
    • dukeslee

      I like that addendum, Shelly. And you’re doing JUST that. Living the journey, and telling great stories.

      Reply
  4. Megan Willome

    The road. Yes. Maybe it’s the Texan in me, but I love a good, long road.

    Reply
    • dukeslee

      Me, too, Megan. Especially with a good friend beside me, and some 80s music in the speakers. Would you be OK with 80s music? 🙂

      Reply
  5. Monica Sharman

    I know and love the Road to Hana but never thought of it the way you write of journey/destination here. Thanks.

    Did you see the sunrise at Haleakala? Whenever I look back at my photos of that, I think of Psalm 130:6.

    Reply
    • dukeslee

      We biked down Haleakala! I should post a fun photograph for you on Twitter later. I can’t remember the name of the plant, or cactus, that is unique to the area. Silver-something … Or maybe not unique to the area, but certainly something I had never seen before.

      Reply
      • Diana Trautwein

        Yes, it is unique to the area, growing only on the slopes of that volcano. Silversword fern, I believe. And you are CRAZY for biking down that road! Yikes.

        Reply
  6. Nancy Franson

    It’s taken me a long time to appreciate this, Jennifer, but the beauty of viewing life as a journey is that it opens my eyes to my traveling companions.

    And to the One who invited me on the journey in the first place–the One who walks with me.

    Reply
    • dukeslee

      And you look good living that journey, Ms. Feather Boa. 😉

      Reply
  7. Linda

    Just yes, Jennifer.

    Reply
    • dukeslee

      Thank you, Linda, for being here. Remembering once again, our sweet journey up that trail in the canyon.

      Reply
  8. elizabeth

    Thank you for the FB like. Gift. Will see you there sometime. This is beautiful, Jennifer. Whatever is right before me in the messy middle, in the goings on, in the in-process, just the mundane, everyday. That is the story. Somewhere in it is gift, blessing, and lesson. Looking closely for it all.

    Reply
    • dukeslee

      My pleasure, Elizabeth! Glad we can connect there as well.

      Reply
  9. Marie

    I am thoroughly enjoying reading your blog. What a blessing it is to me. I am nominating you for the Versatile Blog Award and hope you will accept it in the loving manner in which I intend it. For more information check out the award at http://versatileblogaward.wordpress.com

    Reply
  10. Deb Weaver

    Hello! I’m a new subscriber–what a lovely perspective! It reminds me of John Eldredge’s book called The Journey of Desire. It’s sometimes hard to remember that this is a journey; thanks for the reminder!

    Deb Weaver
    thewordweaver.com

    Reply
  11. Amber

    Hi! Just came across your site for the first time today and even though I don’t know you, I love you as a sister in Christ. I am down with anyone who is down with Jesus that is for sure! I enjoyed your post and look forward to reading more! I hope you can join me in spreading the good news on “Taste Truth Tuesdays” on seasontheday.blogspot.com because I want everyone to “Taste and see that the Lord is GOOD!” I would be honored to have you join me in spreading the news! Excited to read more of what God is teaching you! Love, Amber

    Reply
  12. Diane bailey

    Fantastic pictures! Thank you for the reminder that life is a journey and we need to enjoy the beauty. I need that reminder.

    Reply
  13. Chelle

    Hi Jennifer ~ So glad I found your blog. Enjoyed your post. I like the answer to the question! Thank you for the encouragement today.

    Reply
  14. Diana Trautwein

    Exactly. It is the ROAD to Hana. And that road has been greatly improved since the first time we drove it in 1980. Much better two years ago when we did it for about the 4th time. And a lovely analogy to life, friend. LOVED your pix. I’ve got some from that road, too. Maybe I’ll dig them out…

    Reply

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