I don’t like using the word Holiday and prefer the use of the word Pilgrimage. Lets face it, as Christians we do everything for Christ and his Holy presence is all around the globe. No matter where we go, not thinking about Jesus is impossible and we are always standing on Holy ground. Obviously I am not arguing that some Holy sites like Jerusalem are not more sacred than other ground but hopefully you will get what I mean.
This week I am flying into Athens and off to the Greek suburbs of Nea Filadelphia to meet Christ in the hearts and minds of many True Life In God friends. I surprisingly got invited to a wedding also in the process so I am very excited about it. Many of you may not share my exact sentiments but I feel that a true pilgrimage is one where we don’t go to a big fancy hotel, but plunge right into the heart of the neighbourhood of Christians and people of all creeds to live amongst them and share their joys and their sorrows just like Christ did. To meet Christ in the hopes and dreams of our brothers and sisters. So we rented an apartment with the aim of doing just that.
I want to be like Jesus whose adventure in the Gospels went off the beaten track into a world no tourist ever really goes, where we saw a God who had seen and did wonderful surprising things amidst those he loves. But its not an adventure where we go alone, its an adventure guided by the hand of Christ, a journey towards simple, true peace and love.
I have never met my friend or her family except through Facebook. I have never even met her brother not even on Facebook at all, yet he invites me to the wedding. Isn’t that amazing? How blessed am I, a truly undeserving pilgrim to have had the providence of meeting such a wonderful family of God?
I will hopefully have some wonderful pictures to take home from Greece ( and some good wine ) but there is a perfect picture of the heart that I cannot share with you and that is the memory of having met Jesus in the suburbs of Greece. We often take pictures of one another but do we really see each other? Do we pray that God will help us see the bigger picture, that is, to see each other as Christ sees us? I dare not say I possess this grace but it is one I pray for. So when your next on pilgrimage and your taking a picture of that glorious sunset, ask yourself….am I really seeing this sunset? Or is it just my camera? Because sometimes we can be too busy taking photographs that we never take the time to actually look at the bigger picture. I guess we need to put our cameras down, open our hearts to Gods Grace and get the bigger picture. But its always a picture we cannot show others and take to the grave. How wonderful.
I invite you to pray for my safe journey and to pray for my Greek friends. I ask you to pray for my Greek friends wedding and that their marriage may blossom and bloom all the days of their lives.
If you have been to Greece and have any tips for us on what she should see and do please feel free to comment and advise.
This will be the last blog post from me until I come home. God bless and take care