Once when returning home from a trip, I found myself on a moving sidewalk in an airport. As we all were enjoying the ride, suddenly the sidewalk stopped moving. Everyone’s first reaction was to look down at their feet. It was a glance of confirmation to verify the sidewalk really did stop moving. Then came a brief moment of uncertainty as people wondered if it would resume service. But then panic set in as people looked around not knowing what to do next. It took someone saying, “walk” to get them going. Even then some were not so sure.
It was a comical experience and yet, in many ways, reflects conditions that often happen to us. Life can become a pattern, a cycle where we simply ride along as if on a moving sidewalk. We walk without consideration of what it takes to move. Then something interrupts the pattern and we’re not sure what to do. Even when the answer may seem obvious to someone looking from the outside.
This morning Peter and John find a man crippled from birth begging outside the Temple. Approaching the man, Peter said, “I have nothing to give you, but in the name of Jesus, walk!” Immediately, the crippled man stands up and goes into the Temple dancing and praising God.
The story made me think of the amazing technology being invented daily to help people challenged from birth, or from life, discover movement. At the same time, there is a paralysis that escapes technological assistance. It’s a paralysis of spirit. Our spirituality is often the aspect of life we most take for granted, but can be the most destructive.
Today, may these words help you discover how to walk spiritually when movement feels difficult or impossible. So you may discover fully the joy of life. (Acts 3: 1-10)