Saturday, August 11, 2012

Walking fool

“It is good to collect things, but it is better to go on walks.” Anatole France

Do you walk regularly? Whoever Anatole is/was, that’s good advice. The American lifestyle demands a car culture. (NY and a few other urban centers are the exceptions.)

The grocer is a few miles from our house. It’s a long way to the pharmacist or pet store. Our friends may not live in our neighborhoods and church may be 15 minutes away – by car. Shopping malls have big parking lots to host vehicles for those who come from a wide radius from the stores.

A car makes the trip convenient – and if our loads are heavy, makes errands possible. So, some of us don’t walk further than from our house to our car to the office or shop. Ever.

And our bodies suffer. “Every hour, take a break from sitting,” experts say. “You need the circulation and the movement.” Yet who remembers to leap from the chair to stroll around the building or neighborhood? My mom does. At 77, she takes several walks a day to keep her spine straight and energy high. Sometimes Dad walks along with her – he’s 80 today and fit as the fiddles he loves. (HAPPY BIRTHDAY, POP!)

The dogs and I walk almost every day at home, rain or shine, usually 1-3 miles. I hate our climb up our driveway to the steep street that gets us to the flat mountaintop of our neighborhood. “Do it for the dogs,” I tell myself. Actually, the dogs get me moving = my reason for having a dog, besides companionship.

Here at camp, I’m a walking fool. Each morning I walk my dogs just over a mile to the post office to deposit a postcard or letter. I try not to get into the car unless I have to, fending off runs to the store (“Can I do without that?”) or local attractions (“Do I really want to see that?”) If we want to visit, want to use wifi at the lodge, or otherwise decide to get out of the cabin, we walk. The gravel roads are good for the feet and bad for my shoes, the sharp pebbles wearing through the soles.

Walking provides stimulation for the eyes and a rhythmic meditation of breath and muscle. 20 minutes nearly a day, with a ½ hour walk once a week, should begin to heal and nurture your body and refresh your soul. Your body and soul are the only ones God gave you. Take care of them!

So why are you still sitting there? Get moving!

Read more:
*Does God not see my ways, and number all my steps? Job 31:4

*But you do see! Indeed you note trouble and grief, that you may take it into your hands. Psalm 10:14

*Jesus saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach them many things. Mark 6:34 

*For all of us must appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each may receive recompense for what has been done in the body, whether good or evil. 2 Corinthians 5:10

Moravian Prayer:
We know that you are always with us, O God. Be with us today and every day as we go through life, and help us remember to live as your children, until we see you face to face.

Lord of compassion, we sense the needs of many we pass on the street but do nothing to help. Your sensitivity and concern as the great Shepherd is always at work. Hear our prayer, O Lord. Amen.

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