Time to Book a Pilgrimage

I decided it was time to book a pilgrimage with a travel agent, so I went into a local office to find out what was on offer. “Good morning,” I said, “I would like to book an pilgrimage with you from A to B.” The response from behind the desk came without hesitation but with no hint of impatience and filled with kindly warmth. “I’m sorry sir but we don’t offer short trips from A to B” “Our mission is to encourage people like yourself to travel the whole distance from A to Z.”


Oh dear, I thought! But my curiosity got the better of me and I continued. “Well, what kind of accommodation can I expect on this long journey? Again, a polite, unhesitating but clear and warm response came back to me. “The accommodation on this pilgrimage is uncertain and will almost certainly be modest and consist of whatever is available at the time.”


Again, a deep breath, trying to take this all in. “This certainly sounds like a different type of pilgrimage. What will it cost me?” My expectations were exceeded by the warm and kind voice that responded. “A good question sir, you’ll have the best guide at all times accompanying you throughout the entire journey.” “And, in answer to your specific question, it will cost you at times in monetary value but most of the time we use a different currency!”


A different currency, I thought to myself. The voice came back to me as if my thoughts were on view. “This journey will cost you all that you can give and once the trip is underway there is no turning back. This experience might be puzzling at times but keeping your eye and ear on the guide will always prove to bring you a real sense of assurance.”

“It certainly sounds like a compelling offer.” “But what about my work, family, and home?” “That will all be taken care of sir!” “This all seems too much to take in I thought. Maybe I’ll go away and think about it.”


As if reading my thoughts, the voice came back with words that stopped me dead in my tracks. “This is a unique excursion, sir. It cannot be measured in monetary terms and it will be like nothing else you have ever experienced. Your personal guide is incomparable to anyone else you have ever met. And following him gets us little or nothing of what we commonly think we need or want. He is the one who makes the difference on this journey because you become his personal priority. More than a guide, a close friend unlike any other! It is worth telling you that many people have been transformed by his influence and they have become changed people.” “But you’ll meet some of them on the same journey!”

“What do you think sir?”

[This is a modern day metaphor which came to me recently. Jesus used stories in conversations with women, tax collectors, disciples, and religion scholars as well. For me it has become the language of the heart after thinking about these Scriptures in Luke 9:57-62, 14:25-33]