On Monday, Muriel and I went house-hunting in the Cheshire/Derbyshire area. We left before 8am and got back home after midnight, having covered about 420 miles, viewed four potential homes and visited our daughter and granddaughters. It was a long day, but enjoyable, because I love travelling. Sadly, we didn’t identify our next home yet.
In my lifetime I have been privileged to visit 38 different countries, some very briefly and only once, others for longer or multiple times; we have set up home in 6 of them. I have travelled by air, sea and road – and the occasional train, but there’s something special about driving, when you have, or think you have, control in your own hands. My first car was a 1955 Volkswagen Beetle, bought jointly by my brother and myself when it was 11 years old, for £70. I loved that car, and trusted it once or twice to get me from Belfast to Dublin and back; and more important, to facilitate my courtship of Muriel, who could hear me coming at least 3 streets away.
Journeys are always fascinating, as you get to see new places, meet new people, have lots of different experiences along the way (consider Michael Portillo, or Michael Palin). It’s not surprising that many people have compared life to a journey, looking at the changing scenery, the mountain-tops and valleys, the slow times and the frantic rush to catch the next experience. Your journey will have been different from mine, with different routes, different struggles, different joys and sorrows – but ultimately heading in the same direction.
For most of us, two things would be essential on any journey: a map (or Sat-Nav) and a travelling companion. It’s not much fun going on your own, and no fun at all getting lost. And if your travelling companion knows where you’re going, and what to look out for, and how to introduce you not only to the best things along the way but also to a destination beyond your wildest dreams, where you will receive a rapturous welcome and a share in all the riches of the greatest King ever – then you begin to realise that there’s no Journey like this one, ever. What makes it so brilliantly special is not only the glorious destination we have caught a glimpse of, but the wonderful, amazing Travelling Companion who walks beside us every step of the way, and has promised never to leave us or forsake us.
No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love Him.
That’s a journey I’m enjoying, and it’s exciting to be getting closer to the destination. It’s wonderful to meet you along the way.