J2A Greece Pilgrimage 2008

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

"The story that we bring back from our journeys is the boon. It is the gift of grace that was passed to us in the heart of our journey."


To be perfectly honest, it is very difficult for me to experience my own personal pilgrimage while serving as the leader of the group. I do my best to focus attention on the daily devotions but find myself immediately distracted by planning the next activity or dealing with the schedule for the day.

In between the multitudes of details that unfold, when I get a moment alone, I pray that God will shine a light on my path and direct me towards some kind of personal discovery or transformation. As the pilgrimage progresses I wait to experience something.

In Delphi, I sat at the Temple of Apollo and watched each of our pilgrims take a turn walking alone to the entrance, each person reverently offering his or her question or prayer. I was witnessing something incredibly powerful, examples of immense courage and personal growth, and all of a sudden I found myself crying, wiping away the tears with my already damp handkerchief.

The overwhelming wave of emotion surprised me, and I knew I had arrived. What a gift we gave to each other, supporting one another along the pilgrim's way. I don't know what was asked or prayed for, but I do know we were there together, and that bond will be with us forever.

Rob Burlington

22 Comments:

At 8:22 PM, Anonymous Joanna Stroud said...

I would think you are each torn between looking forward to getting home and regretting your incredible journey is almost at an end. But actually - your incredible journeys are really just beginning! I have so enjoyed all your wonderful writings and the fabulous pictures, that except for looking forward to seeing Alex tomorrow, I, too, hate for your trip to end! I CAN"T WAIT to see more pictures and hear more about your travels! Safe trip home - see you all tomorrow evening!

Joanna Stroud

 
At 9:06 AM, Blogger JP Burlington said...

what a powerful message from my big brother. there are not many things in life that make Rob come to tears, so I do believe that Rob did finally arrive...thank you so much for keeping us all involved in your journey. have a wonderful trip home, and be safe.

 
At 9:57 PM, Blogger Laurie Haynes Burlington said...

Welcome home pilgrims. I look forward to being enriched by your experiences. Thank you for the inspiration of your honesty and presence in the moment.

 
At 10:17 AM, Blogger Peter said...

In this brief writing, you (Rob) have captured the essence of the journey of life. We get caught up in the here and now, the day to day, the tasks of the moment. As we live our lives in the moment to moment, we look for signposts along the way to affirm the path we are on, questioning if we are on the right path, or how we got on this path in the first place. If we go too far on the road without signs, we start to question ourselves and our faith.

However, for those who are constantly searching (and I know you are), the signposts inevitably appear, most often as we come around the big bend - out of nowhere and at times when we feel we have lost the way completely.

The journey of life is a long one, with straight-aways and curves, downhills and uphill climbs (we may even run out of gas once in a while on the Jersey Turnpike - I told you to get off at the previous exit). However, as long as we are open to the journey and always searching, the light will eventually shine on the path, and those moments of personal discovery will serve as anchors and examples of strength and faith as we continue on the next phase of the journey.

Thanks for sharing this, Rob.

 
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