i have these lovely new shoes that have “the journey is the destination” written all over them. apparently it’s a quote by dan eldon, who was a photojournalist killed in a mob in somalia when he was only 22 years old. i love these shoes- they’re colorful and fun and comfortable, and they have such wonderful sentiment. last weekend i wore them on a multi-state road trip and laughed about how appropriate the statement was as i drove by myself for hundreds of miles of highway and watched thousands of faces i’ll never see again pass by. i so enjoyed that journey, and in those moments, it was my destination.

it got me thinking though. if the journey is the only destination, what have we to hope for but more struggle and weariness? if i truly believe that my journey will end in more journeying, what hope do i have? do i really believe that the journey is the destination? what is my destination?

ultimately, my destination is heaven. i’ve heard this in countless sunday school classes, made confessions of faith that have solidified my spot and spent a lifetime being indoctrinated in this belief. and truly, i do believe it, though sometimes my life may reflect otherwise. but if heaven is my destination, then surely the journey is not the destination. this journey i’m on today and tomorrow and yesterday was not heaven. this journey reeks of imperfection, hardly a shadow of what heaven is promised to be.

yet i am reminded of the prayer Jesus himself taught us to pray. a prayer in which we pray that “thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” i am reminded that the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective- and that people have been praying that prayer for over 2000 years. surely one of them was righteous.

my journey here on earth is not yet at its destination. but i am journeying closer always. i am journeying in confidence that a Perfect Kingdom is coming, and that even today this imperfect world is being transformed through the prayers of the righteous and the redeemed lives of those who cannot contain their hope for the destination. and i am living in the incredible gift of the opportunity to be part of that transformation. i live in the act of hope.

i pray tonight that the journey would become the destination. and still i journey on.