Life is best described as a journey. Sometimes the journey is smooth, and sometimes its rough. Sometimes we find ourselves in passages that are lengthy while others are relatively brief. Sometimes we’re able to cruise along without interruption, yet there are times when we are abruptly forced to take a detour. God came to help us understand that life is not simply about safe arrival at a destination. Life is also about the trip we make toward the destination.
Mark Nepo said, “To journey without being changed is to be a nomad. To change without journeying is to be a cameleon. To journey and be transformed by the journey is to be a pilgrim.”
The real meaning of life is not a journey question or a destination question. It’s a relationship question. Your journey and destination are both important, but just as important is who you have with you. We can’t get through the journey to the destination without others at our side. More than principles and practices, we need people. We need relationships…guides and guards that help just on the journey and be with us when we reach our destination.
There are two relationship myths that we need to be aware of. The first myth says, “I don’t need anyone else…I am self sufficient.” That’s simply not true. It was God who observed Adam in the Garden of Eden and said, “It’s not good that the man be alone.” When Jesus called the 12 disciples, he called them “so that he might send them out, and that they might be with him.”
The second myth is the romantic notion that one person can meet all the needs of another person. Marilyn McCord Adams, the Regius Professor of Divinity at Oxford University said, “It is a lie that any one person can be everything to another. Even in the blessed trinity, the Father needs both the Son and the Spirit; the Holy Spirit both the Son and the Father; the Son both Father and Holy Spirit.” God exists in relationship, and if we learn anything from the book of Genesis, we learn that God has created us to exist in relationships which reflect him image. In the first 11 chapters we see the plan unfold: marriage, family, community, and nations. When the Ten Commandments were given, we observe those commandments focus on how we are to appropriately relate to God and one another. The Ten Commandments are more than behavior guidelines. They are rules of relationships.
We need many people to help us. This weekend I began a new series about 8 relationships you need in order to successfully navigate the journey based on Len Sweet’s book “11.” You need others. You need people who will not just mind their own business, but mind each other’s business, and especially mind your business. That’s called intimacy. Tomorrow I’ll post more about the first relationship we need in life.