I needed that, not that I knew it. I needed to feel physically competent, capable, and strong. The sacrifices necessary as a local pastor committed to keeping my congregants safe, healthy, and alive during the pandemic paid their toll. Of course, if you’ve been following me you know that I joined the Great Resignation and am on a road trip across the continent hoping to find myself again.
When I read the indicator that the trail to the Delicate Arch at Arches National Park was difficult, I decided I would only go part way and turn around. I was already struggling with a touch of altitude sickness after all. But I kept putting one foot in front of the other. I allowed myself pauses. I sipped my water judiciously and why I had failed to bring more. Oh, yeah! I had only planned to go part way.
I didn’t know I needed that.
As I write this, the stone paths of the trail (and inadequate hiking shoes) have left me with extremely tired and achy feet. I am physically capable, a little battered, and nowhere near my fitness level in early 2020 before our lives were disrupted by COVID-19. The staggering responsibility I felt for keeping a congregation of people safe and healthy even when they were ready to pretend it was over, required personal sacrifice. My physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being suffered. I sacrificed much for the church (the people!) physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.
But I am strong! I am capable. I am worthy of divine love! I earned that arch and I feel all the better for it. My journey of reset continues.