There are several lovely walking tracks not far from my home. I walked one recently with my son and his sons. My youngest grandson, who is two and a half, found the walk challenging after awhile. Still, he was determined to make it to the lookout where we cross a creek as it drops over the edge of our mountain top. Before we started, my son and I both suspected that we would have to take turns in carrying him as he tired.
The lookout is about 1.5 kilometres from the carpark. I’ve stood on that bridge and looked over the creek to the horizon before. I asked my grandsons if they liked this spot. They said yes. My eldest grandson was obviously so happy to watch the creek disappear and appreciate how high we were above the land below.
I told him that it was an effort to walk here but without making that effort, we would never be able to enjoy this perspective. We got to see what we wanted to see, but our journey was only half done. We now had to go all the way back again. As the walking track is a circuit, we got to choose. We could go back the way we came, or we could keep going forward. It was the same distance either way. He chose to keep going in case we might see something different.
We did, and we did.
Once more I was struck with the parallels to groups I lead in Formation. We have to make the journey to appreciate the perspective we can only appreciate by arriving at that place Formation leads us. Then we continue our journey. We benefit from making the effort, and we benefit from journeying together. It can be more of an effort for some than for others and sometimes we need to support each other home.
Still as The Fox said to the Little Prince, “some grownups will not understand why these things are matters of great importance”.
Dr Michael Downey is an Author, Teacher, Consultant, Retreat Leader & Workshop Facilitator. ,