Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The One With The Geocaching

From when we first met - we. had. no clue.
A post participant in the 2013 revgalblogpals Blog Carnival:

What's the most surprising connection you've made through RevGalBlogPals?
I'd venture to say that if you know me, then you know my answer to this part of the question.

What's the most surprising or helpful thing you've learned/experienced through this galship of friends.
Back when I needed it the most, I learned that I was not alone in this vocation. Being a pastor is hard. Being a female pastor takes it up a notch. 

In this group I have experienced understanding and about as unconditional a love as one can receive aside from our Creator. I have experienced ridiculous, side-splitting laughter and I have experienced the deepest tears that most assuredly cleanse the way for true joy.

I have also experienced geocaching and was very surprised to actually like it. Admittedly on the first cruise it was an excuse to walk around in Mexico for a bit, but it ended up being so much more than that, I preached about it in a sermon base on the walk to Emmaus:

As most of you know I was away this past weekend with a group of women clergy on retreat. On our free day I decided to join another woman as she attempted to achieve her goal of becoming an international geocacher

Don’t worry. I didn’t know either.
Geocaching is basically a treasure hunt where handheld GPS systems can be used to find ‘treasures’ hidden all over the world. For instance, there is one of these treasures right on the campus of Dickinson College. So if you were interested in finding it you would look up the official geocache website, find the latitude and longitude and any clues that other geocachers may have left behind and off you would go on your adventure.

We were in Mexico, so finding a treasure there would officially make my Geek friend – and the three of us who accompanied her - international geocachers.  

And so off we went… and we went… and we went… and I had to take off my shoes due to the raging blister… and we went…. And we found. ..
Nothing.
Now, I was disappointed, but my friend was crushed.

And so we kept walking.
Past the interesting men with the weird beverages for that time of day. 
Past the military compound with different men and their very big guns.
Past where the sidewalk ends…
Enough.

My friend was ready to quit and we could tell she was very disappointed and yes, sad. So sad that even I was not teasing her for taking us on this seemingly pointless adventure. You could tell finding the treasure really meant something to her so we encouraged her, let’s keep walking.

Proof we found it!!!
And we did and we watched as she realized we were once again getting close to a treasure and with some effort on all of our parts – and a stranger’s – we made it behind a beverage establishment and found a US certified mailbox that seemed more than just a little out of place and therein lied the treasure!

This is what she wrote:
As we were walking back (to where we were staying), I recognized that Christ had been walking with me. At any point, my companions could have bailed, but they didn’t. Even when I was trying to reconcile myself to extreme disappointment, they were still looking. I opened the mailbox but (the people I was with) opened their hearts, and I knew God had been walking with us just like Jesus walked with the two on the road to Emmaus (Luke 24).The find made me ecstatic.The “walking with” made me blessed.

Friends, there is joy and there is light… and then there is the joy and light that one experiences when they finally come out of the dark and what they are searching for is no longer a stranger.


Just. Keep. Walking.

----

Shoes still on = pre-blister.
Officially I was preaching to the congregation, but make no mistake about it, I was preaching my truth. Through Revgalblogpals I experienced rebirth and renewal... and the reminder that sometimes we have to just. keep. walking.


6 comments:

Teri said...

such a great story!! I love it. And I'm so grateful to be part of this community with you all.

marthaspong.com said...

I still remember how happy you looked that day, and what a relief it was to see the good the walk had done you.

revkjarla said...

well, this just made me cry. beautiful story.
amen.

Deb said...

I remember when this geocaching experience happened and you first talked about it. What a wonderufl metaphor. :)

RevHRod said...

You were all so delighted with the trip, yourselves and that man with the clues. It was great fun to hear the stories that night.

Hot Cup Lutheran said...

beautifully said...
and how blessed we are (RGBP) to know that we walk together... how blessed!!!