Spring is a glorious time of the year. In my opinion, besides being one-fourth of God's promise that we will always have four seasons, it's the most beautiful of the four. Spring radiates new life, from trees rousing from their winter slumber, to hibernating animals doing the same. Also included is the birth of new life that occurs during spring calving season, common to us who live in cattle-country USA.
Spring is also the time of year when I awake from a personal winter-long semi-hibernation, and happen to glance in the mirror. Whatsat"? I ask. It looks like a pudgy growth circling its way around my mid-section. "Where'd that come from? I'd swear it wasn't there yesterday, maybe it's a fast growing tumor or something."
Fortunately, it's not a tumor, but it's definitely a "something" that has to go, and I have just the ticket to get rid of it; it's known as walking.
Walking, I'm told, is one of the best overall exercises humans have at their disposal. The thing I like most about it is it's free, and I don't have to show a membership card, or use my debit card whenever I want to do it. I can walk whenever I want, about anywhere I want; I can walk by myself, or with somebody, and go as far and long as I want.
If I encounter a writers block, or while I'm online happen to look at my bank account and panic, I simply minimize my computer screen, head outside, and walk around the block until I've worked whatever is bugging me out of my system.
In less than two weeks I turn 66, and if I may be braggadocio for a moment, one of my greatest spring and summer enjoyments is walking the Monument. I live about 25 miles from a National Monument that towers 800 plus feet into the clean, fresh, pollution-free air of western Nebraska. Years ago, a winding path to the top of the Monument was hewn into its steep slope, and the path is a mile-and-a half long to the top, or a three mile round trip.
Once nice weather is here to stay, my youngest daughter, who is in her mid-twenties, and I, try to walk that path two or three times a week. Depending, of course, if ours and her babysitter's schedule allows it. If she can't make it, though, I often walk by myself.
What an experience, step-by-step, I walk over 800 feet into the sky, surrounded by the majesty of our God and His creation. After years of walking, I understand why He made that exercise beneficial. Walking slows me down, even when I walk fast my mind works slower, filled with less clutter, which makes it possible for me to grasp more of Him.
No wonder the beauty of spring and walking go hand-in-hand, to the Glory of God. To Him goes the glory for all He has done.
Scottsbluff, NE, US
Hugh Houchin is a freelancer who's been writing professionally for six years. Houchin's been published in three Nebraska newspapers and on numerous websites. You may read more of his articles at:
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