10/31/2021 Sand in Our Shoes ~Rev. Bernie Chung

A person named Edward Payson Weston began to leave New York City on foot in March of 1909, planning to walk to San Francisco within a hundred days. The New York Times called the walk across the American continent "The Last Great Walk”. It is worth noting that Mr. Weston was already seventy years old the day he started walking. It’s also worth noting that he walked about forty miles a day on average.

In October of 2016, 29-year-old Pete Kostelnick set the world record for the fastest speed on foot across the United States; he ran 3,067 miles from San Francisco City Hall to New York City Hall in 42 days, 6 hours and 30 minutes.

I once read that another person walked all the way from San Francisco to New York. When telling his experience, he said that the hardest part of the journey were not the crossing deserts under hot sun, climbing of the high Rocky Mountains, or navigating and

crossing turbulent rivers. He said that the biggest obstacle was the sand in his shoes, which made it difficult for him to move.

In fact, many times when we think about the defeats at the hands of our foes, or our self-inflicted failures, the root causes for us to have stumbled may not be so obvious. Often seemingly insurmountable obstacles were overcome, arduous tasks achieved. Nonetheless, it may turn out that small things like sand in our shoes could cause irritation and result in our demise. Our success or failure is hardly determined by the environment we face, but by the will and attitude of how we tackle the environment. All of us will encounter difficulties in our life journey. If we remember to rely on God's guidance and also have the right attitude and perseverance, success through life is assured.

Proverbs 4:23 (NIV) says: “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” The best way to guard our heart is to let it fill with God’s words of wisdom. When our hearts are filled with God’s words, our thoughts will be free from modern day temptations. Our eyes will not wander but focus on God.

Let me repeat, what really matters is not what we have to face in life, but our attitude towards it. If we cannot prevent the sand from entering into our shoes, let’s take off our shoes to remove the sand as often as needed. This single mindedness applies to our

adherence to God’s Word and will assure us to be able to “walk” and complete our life journey triumphantly. May God have mercy on us. Amen!

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