A few months ago, a friend handed me a book called: Eat, Pray, Love insisting I read it before I embarked on my upcoming journey overseas.
I was hesitant at first, because there are definitely some things in that book that I do not agree with or believe in- however- if we never allow our beliefs to be tried and tested how will our faith stand strong when the fiery trials descend?
So I read it. I am a person who can overlook an author’s personal biases to enjoy a good story. This book is so well done. Eat Pray Love is a memoir of one woman’s travels to three countries in search of restoration, peace, and love.
Sounds kind of hippy I know. But thinking about travel, culture and love, and reflecting on what I loved most about that book, I wanted to put down on paper some of my own musings I prepare to set off on my own unique journey.
Travel: Travel is not for the faint of heart, the weak, or the weary. Anyone who has traveled transcontinental will agree, its hard on the body, on the psyche, not to mention draining and dehydrating. The determined traveler must be patient, willing to endure a time of uncomfortable dryness, resist agitation and annoying distractions, all for the joy set before them.
Culture: Culture is the great catalyst. The uniqueness of this vast world we live in, the diversity of culture and curiosity of the unknown draws us from our comfort zone into the “unknown”, because something deep inside tells us that there is more going on here than meets the human eye. And like the great explorers and expeditions of old, we set off in search of satisfying that inner call to something vastly different than we currently know. The sites, sounds, tastes, and smells of a world not yet known to us. A journey toward something bigger than us.
Love: Love is what we seek. Perfect love, fulfilling love, redeeming love, satisfying love. He who creates loves his creation and wants to share what he has created and wants us to enjoy his creation together with Him. The Creator of all things has set eternity in the hearts of men. Its by divine design that we follow our wander lust, seeking inspiration, looking to serve outside of ourselves, to do something bigger than human strength… this is the Creator working in us, leading us to a deep understand of the root of the answer. Love.
The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God. We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of childbirth right up to the present time. Not only so, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what he already has? But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently. (Romans 8:18-25)
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”
He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son.” (Revelation 21)
The time has come. The time is now. The time to seek. The time to discover. The time to delight. The time to love.
Ecclesiastes 3: A Time for Everything
What does the worker gain from his toil? I have seen the burden God has laid on men. He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end. I know that there is nothing better for men than to be happy and do good while they live. That everyone may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all his toil-this is the gift of God. I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that men will revere him.
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I too was curious about the Eat, Pray, Love book after I saw a woman reading it. I perused it in a bookstore but moved on without buying…sounds like it might be worth the read.
When I travel, the music of a particular country or region often captures might heart right after the food. Joe and I discovered an amazing World Music section of the National Geographic website. Check it out at http://video.nationalgeographic.com/video/player/music/regions-wm/europe-wm/aisha-wm.html