A Summer Stroll

If we do not regularly quit work . . ., we take ourselves far too seriously. The moral sweat pouring off our brows blinds our eyes to the action of God in and around us.

Eugene H. Peterson

            While riding the elevator in Doylestown Hospital on my way to visit a church member and I saw a poster for Walk with a Doc. In the summer of 2015, Doylestown Hospital launched this program for their patients. This national initiative simply invites people to walk with a doctor, usually a cardiologist. A news release from the hospital’s website states: “Walk With a Doc is a national non-profit organization whose mission is to encourage healthy physical activity in people of all ages, and reverse the consequences of a sedentary lifestyle in order to improve the health and well-being of the country.” When you walk with a  doc you ask your burning questions about health or how the doc thinks the Phillies are doing with their re-building efforts.  

            As a long-time walker/hiker, I love getting my long legs moving outside. One of my favorite spiritual practices is a called an Emmaus Walk. Presbyterian pastor and author Eugene Peterson has a nice description of these walks: We got the phrase "Emmaus Walks" from Douglas V. Steere, who told us the story of an old Lutheran retreat master he once knew, very Prussian, whose speech was thick with German gutturals. He specialized in men's retreats. As the men would come into the lodge, he would make them open their suitcases, from which he would confiscate all the whiskey. Then he would pair them up and send them off on what he called ee-mouse walks.

               Steere told us that for a long time he wondered what ee-mouse walks were, and then realized one day that the old Prussian drillmaster was sending his men out on Emmaus walks: two disciples walking and talking together and Jesus, unrecognized, with them. But afterward they knew: ‘Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?’" (Luke 24:32 KJV).

                This summer, I would love to take a stroll with you for the sake of getting to hear about your life and your “heart” while enjoying the glory of God that surrounds us in Bucks County. There are three levels of walks: Easy (walking around the cemetery), Moderate (walking along the tow path), Slightly Challenging (a hike at Kinser Mountain or Ralph Stover State Park). There is also an “arm chair” option, which means instead of killing ourselves in the heat; I come to your home and we drink iced tea and talk there.

              Strolls with Stuart (how’s that for a snappy title?) begin the first week of June. To schedule a time contact Melissa Bottelier (office@tmpc.org) in the office. Our website will soon have a sign up page.

               So, check your schedule, dump your whiskey, lace up your Air Jordans and let’s make a walking date—you, me, and Jesus