Putting on Our Spiritual Hiking Boots: Becoming a Seasoned Hiker

We all know it—experience is the best teacher. The more you do something the better you become. The more you hike, the stronger your hiking muscles. And the greater your stamina and perseverance to reach your destination.

As you gain more experience in the different types of trails and difficulty, you become more confident in trekking through the woods. Instead of being capable of only doing an easy 1 mile stroll along a river, you’ll be able to hike a difficult 10 miler up a mountain with glorious views along the way. This is called training, and we need it in every area of our lives—including our walk with Christ.

Just as in hearing or reading about trail descriptions doesn’t get us into hiking shape, neither does gaining knowledge about this Christian life make us spiritually mature. Applying them consistently does.

By humbly accepting God’s path for you and exercising your faith and will “muscles,” you will become a seasoned mature hiker in God’s territory.

The more experience you get in trekking with God:

  • The more familiar you become in understanding His character and His ways. You’ll be better able to recognize His trail markers and remain on the right path.

  • The more you will learn to trust in Him as He proves Himself faithful. The more confident you become in your Trail Guide rather than in your own abilities.
  • The better you’ll become in dealing with the large boulders and stream crossings of life. Becoming wise as to whether to go over, around, or via a different route. Obstacles will be seen as:
    • stepping stones instead of stumbling blocks
    • opportunities to learn and grow
    • wonderful challenges instead of drudgery.
  • The more willing you’ll be to attempt difficult trails (=ministry opportunities) despite the hardships you know you will encounter on that path. You will see them as adventures—not hardships.

  • The more you will be rewarded with great sights of God’s beauty and glory; the greater your contentment and joy because you know you are pleasing your Guide.
  • The more you’ll be able to persevere and get back up when you fall; the less likely you’ll turn around or give up when you encounter tough areas.

  • The more you will be able to rest and relax, without fear of the unknown path ahead.

  • The more you’ll be able to enjoy the journey. To stop and appreciate the beautiful and interesting sights along the way—even though they pale in comparison to your ultimate destination.

  • The more you will take time to look back and see how far you’ve come and realize that this was indeed the best path to take.
  • The more you’ll understand that your Guide is less interested in your pace than in you staying on the right path, being with Him, and maturing.
  • The more your love and adoration of God will grow along with a closer intimacy with Him.

As a seasoned hiker you’ll be able to pass on your knowledge and experience to others. You’ll be able to show others the right and only trail, train them how to hike the difficult sections, and help them develop trust, adoration, and love for the One and only true Guide to our heavenly destination.

I want to take as many as I can to that magnificent glorious view up there! Will you join me in my trek upwards? There’s plenty of room on this non-crowded trail. And IT WILL BE WORTH IT!

I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me…. One thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. (Phil 3:12-14)

Scripture taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION® NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.