There is a funny scene in the 1983 comedy hit Vacation where Clark Griswold is tempted to steal money from an open cash register at the El Tovar hotel on the rim of the Grand Canyon where he and his wife and kids spent the night in route to Wally World for a family vacation. Various unfortunate and humorous events have led to a situation where Clark feels that theft is his best option. Clark's obsession with his destination, Wally World, a Six Flags-like Theme Park, has caused him to completely lose perspective on where he is, what he is doing, or what is truly important to him. Having arrived the night before, he and his family have not even had the opportunity to take in the majestic view of the Grand Canyon, one of the Seven Wonders of the Natural World. After he steals the money from the register, Clark runs out of the hotel to find his wife and kids taking in the panoramic scenery as they look out from the south rim of the canyon. He quickly ushers the family away as his wife tries to get him to experience the spectacular vista right in front of him. Unfortunately, Clark needed to flee the scene of his crime which occurred due to his obsession with his destination. He missed what could have been a far more enjoyable vacation if he had slowed down and enjoyed the trip instead of focusing on the idea he had of his journey's end.
The Apostle Peter reminds his readers (the church) that they are strangers and aliens just passing through this world. Unlike Clark Griswold, however, we are encouraged in scripture to make the most of our time. Instead as we focus on our eternal destination, we are to be grateful for where God has us right now. James reminds his readers, Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. James 4:14 The journey itself matters.
Our lives are a mist that appears for a little while and vanishes. Each day is a gift. And, every person who crosses our path is an opportunity for us to fulfill the purpose for which we've been created. We are called to be salt and light. Every "chance" encounter is an opportunity for us to bring God's radiance and flavor to those with whom we interact. I am confident that as we live with this aim, we will find that even the mundane, day-to-day, "random" meetings will become a part of a bigger story that brings purpose, peace and joy to our lives.
Each day we go into the world with the opportunity to make an impact. Each person whose paths cross ours matters. Lives intersect for a reason. I believe there is One who directs our steps to these sometimes seemingly random meetings. My goal for these encounters is that I make a difference. That is my desire for those who venture across my blog. I hope you are blessed and it makes a difference for you.