The fallen tree was gone from the trail this morning. Someone from the city with a chainsaw, unaware of Zen sayings about an obstacle becoming a new path, cut the fallen tree in pieces and set them on the side of the trail. I walked three miles in 42 minutes. I thought a lot about families in the congregation struggling with dementia or cancer or stroke who would give all they own to have their obstacle removed. It’s not always possible to see life’s obstacles in a positive way.
I was thinking too about these words from Jurgen Moltmann:
To put it simply: God is for me; I am his child. Christ is beside me; I am his brother. Whether this makes me believe more strongly or whether I doubt all the more, whether I am swallowed up in the darkness of night or find myself at the dawn of a new day — I know: there is someone waiting for me, who will not give me up, who goes ahead of me, who lifts me up, someone to whom I am important.
I suppose in the end when you cannot step over the obstacle or set it aside, what helps you most is the knowledge that there is Someone to whom you are important and always will be. That relationship never disappears, and it is the ground under your feet.