A pilgrimage is a journey we take for God's purposes- purposes that are seldom clear when we set out and will be rewritten as we go,
(Nancy Cocks, Invisible we see you, Wild Goose Publications)
With this in mind I want to retain some degree of flexibility, as I continue with the planning, so that I can be open to promptings and opportunities as they present themselves along the way, both in planning and execution. However there are some aspects that are unchangeable; the direction I shall travel.
From North to South.
The idea of walking the length and breadth of this land came about through a conversation with close friends, in 2009. Immediately my imagination was sparked, and I pictured myself travelling from North to South. Some months later, after I had continued to pray over these thoughts and seek confirmation and guidance I had a vision of a fire moving over Britain. It started in the North, and moved South transforming everything it touched, I took this as confirmation of the direction I should travel. I was later to hear of other prophetic words which spoke of Fire from the North further re-enforcing the conviction to start at John O'Groats and make my way South.
The vision is to walk
The prompting to travel on foot welcomes the slower passage through the land, a conscious resolve to reject the modern mindset that expects, demands and even counts on the instant and easily accessible. For me the choice is to travel at a slower pace, and utilise the time to interact with God, people and the created world; to be available to waste time with God. The achievement of getting there is not the goal, it is the passage through the land and the various interactions and connections I make whilst travelling along the way, whether planned or spontaneous.
This is a deliberate attempt to connect with a way of being which reaches back to the Celtic Saints, those heroes of faith who first brought Christianity to Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England shaping our history - their future. What was it about their lives that left such a mark on these lands, their prayers, their values, their hearts? I believe within the answer to this question lies a key to the future shape of Christianity here, and so touching the past, not just me, but we who believe can shape the future. This walk is a Pilgrimage of Discovery not only of the past but of the Now. Learning as I connect with the disciplines, routines and way-of-life of the Saints; hearing from God, applying it, interacting with people and discovering what happens. In my small way, for a few months I am becoming, as Corrie Ten Boom was, a Tramp for the Lord being available, and sharing my life with those God leads me to, hoping to make a difference.