Just a Few Days to Go
(And your gifts have arrived)
Hello friends, or should I call you walking companions? Are you soon ready for our journey together? Just a few days now and the story begins: our long walk through the long story of grace.
But don’t be mistaken. This story is no fairy tale, no pep talk, no entertaining distraction. This is a story to live in. A story to live out. A story that just might rewrite our lives if we let it, and this has nothing to do with the writing, but everything to do with who the story is written about, and what He has brought about… all for love of us.
We’ll begin our journey in the garden of Eden this week, meandering through the story of creation, remembering what it means to be a human being made in the image of God. Why linger in Eden? Because unless we know who we were created to be, we won’t understand what we’ve lost; and unless we understand what we’ve lost, we won’t know what it means to be found, and we won’t comprehend why God has gone to such lengths to restore us to ourselves. To Himself.
So this first week will be slightly different to the rest of the walk. Next Monday it will pick up more pace as we meet darkness head on with the fall, float with Noah through a flood, and begin to journey overland with Abraham and his family from Ur of the Chaldeans as he follows God into the promised land, on their partnering search for the city with eternal foundations whose architect and builder is God.
Keep in mind that the ‘Long Walk…’ is a story, so rather than a 5 minute thought for the day or short pep talk to spur you on, the Long Walk takes the time of a story… the time of a strolling, rambling adventure with God on the trails He’s beaten back in search of His wandering children. Reading it will take 15-25 minutes a day (depending on how fast you read). Join us as your time allows. And I would definitely say that it is best enjoyed with a cuppa and even a friend to talk it over with at times.
Actually quite a few people are telling me that they plan to take the journey together with a small group of friends, talking it through as they go (some in person, some on WhatsApp or other means). That just sounds like fun to me. So if you haven’t got a walking companion yet, grab a friend or two and invite them along. The more the merrier!
To encourage your fellowship and deepen your journey, you’ll find a brief “Journey further” reflection after each daily walk; just a few questions for those who want to go deeper. Talk these over with friends, journal them or ignore them, that’s entirely up to you.
If you do want to mull things over with others or have some thoughts to share, you are so welcome to join our ‘walking together’ Facebook group on the Long Walk Facebook page. Where ever we are located in the world, this can be a place where we can encourage one another, share our thoughts, our uphill plods, our downhill sprints, or just the moments and thoughts that stop us in our tracks.
The fun thing about this group is that we can also share photos and stories of all the ways we are living the long walk of grace this Easter season from all over the world.
The facebook sharing group is right here…
You can also find it in bottom the footer of the Long walk journey site itself. This Long Walk journey site also has space for comments and discussion as well, so let’s keep talking as we walk together.
One of the lovely things about this journey is that we can be taking it alongside people from all over the world and sharing our adventure together. One of the challenges this brings though is navigating the time zones. So that our friends in Asia and the Australasian region can have the Long Walk in their hands bright and early each morning (to enjoy with their morning tea or coffee) it will mean that our walking companions in the Caribbean and the Americas will have it arrive in their inboxes the afternoon before each daily walk. So my friends in the Caribbean and the Americas you will have it in your hands early. Try not to peak though, you’ll spoil the surprise! Just know it is there waiting for you whenever you’re ready.
One thing about this long walk you will notice is that this is a scenic journey, there’s plenty to see along the way. The beauty of God’s good creation will surround us on our journey weaving alongside the story and even encouraging us further into it. This first week is illustrated with a mix photographs from the tropical ‘Eden’ of Jamaica as well as some silhouette sunset pictures from the ‘Eden’ of Iona island in Scotland and other parts of the UK. My two children Zoe and Oliver also make an appearance from time to time.
Now, I am very excited to put into your hands some gifts I’ve created for you to get you started and to encourage you on your journey. Just a few little things as we prepare to walk together. I’ll be sending you a little kit bag of fun each weekend as we rest from the weeks journey and prepare for the next, so keep an eye on your inbox or our Long Walk post box for these.
Here are your gifts for the coming week…
Printable Scripture cards: One for each day until next Sunday. There are two versions, a decorative colour version and a black and white version (for those who prefer the minimalist style or to decorate their own). These scriptures are all connected with the journey of the Long Walk and can be a way to carry the long story with you into your day, mulling it over as you go. I’ll write to you more about this later on.
A Scripture poster: Each week, I’ve chosen a significant Scripture that frames the journey of our week together, creating a frame-able Word for your wall.
40 Ideas for a Memorable Easter Season: A list of suggestions for you to bring the long story of Easter alive in your home this Easter season.
Our family recipe for Shrove Tuesday pancakes: My husband David has perfected this simple recipe over time so we’re sharing it with you now. These are English style pancakes similar to French crepes.
And coming very soon…
Over the next few days I’ll also be sending you some suggestions for ‘New traditions celebrating an old story’. These are fresh ways to live the long story of grace this Lent, this Easter season, weaving the story into the rhythms and routines of our days. These new traditions will be collected together in the new traditions corner of the Long Walk site if you miss them. Ignore them or enjoy them, they’re completely optional.
So, are you soon ready to head out? Pack your thermos, bring your sunhat, brush off your walking shoes and I’ll see you right here Tuesday morning.
Oh. By the way, it’s not too late to invite friends to join us on the trail with Jesus, so feel free to send this letter out and gather your walking companions together. Make a party of it. Everyone’s welcome!
If you yourself haven’t joined us yet, you can do so here…
I’m so thrilled to be sharing this journey with you this Easter season as we explore the long story of grace together.
See you on the road!