Nichole Collins MacMillan

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A Blog Post

Pilgrim Thoughts 1: Pilgrimage is a luxury.

Pilgrim feet made it to the Mediterranean

Pilgrim feet made it to the Mediterranean


Pilgrimage is a luxury.


Sometimes we think of a pilgrimage as something we are compelled to do.

A quest for our souls.

And so it may be.


My soul certainly needs both challenge and refreshment – a new encounter with a Holy God.


But this time away from my regular activities, obligations, and responsibilities takes a lot of work on behalf of others.

While I am here communing with God and my fellow pilgrims, family, friends, and colleagues are holding down the fort and keeping things together while I am gone.


My parents and my in laws are with my kids and my pets.

My work colleagues are fielding questions and running errands and writing reports I’ll never know about.

My kids are coping with new routines and new morning personnel.

The puppy probably isn’t getting his daily walks off the leash.


For me to be here, lots of other people had to step outside their normal routine and fill in the gaps I left behind.  And they are doing so with joy and graciousness.  And I am grateful for their love and sacrifice.


And then there are the people on this side of the journey.

Claudia who shares her knowledge of history and culture and makes plans for bathroom breaks, lunch, coffee, and boat rides….

Sam who safely whips that bus through round abouts and up mountains and into tiny parking places….

And our leaders, Debra and John, who prayed for us and planned for us and paved this way…

And my fellow pilgrims who share sips of water, bits of learning, stories from home, wonderings, and wanderings…


My pilgrimage is possible because people who love me have made it so.

My pilgrimage is possible because people I hardly know have made it so.

I have so very little to do with it.  I am the beneficiary of their generosity and grace.  This is luxury.


I follow in the steps of generations of others because someone made a way for me.  Again and again.  Here and there.


And this is the foundation of everything else that will follow.

Thanks be to God.

1 Comment
  • Sarah Erickson on February 23, 2018

    Amen. I get it.
    Peace be with you.

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