tourist, pilgrimage,or sojourner?

By November 5, 20102010, Asia

To follow the trend of everyone else I am going to write about what our devotions was on today: the Pilgrimage we are on. Though to the outsider we are just a large group of tourist. Though no one wants to be a tourist because tourist has such a negative term. To be caught taking pictures of  some ruin, or caught wearing khaki shorts and a bright Hawaiian shirt would just be dreadful.

To call it a Pilgrimage we are suggesting that we are  “a person (group) who journeys to a sacred place for religious reasons.” (www.oxforddictionaries.com) We are journeying to a place not necessarily to a religious destination, but on a spiritual journey of our own. The Hebrew word for pilgrimage is maguwr. The root of maguwr is guwr, which means Sojourner.  To be a sojourner means to  “dwell, afraid, stranger, gather together, fear, abide, assemble, stand in awe, gathered, inhabitant, remain,” (www.blueletterbible.org)

We are all sojourners, we are just passing through. We are all in this country. It is strange, it is different, yet we are surviving. We are at times so engulfed in the unknown that we become familiar with it. We have become familiar with this city and soon we must uproot. At times it seems like we will never really get it, but we do. we understand our surroundings and begin to learn the reason for it all. As we learn about the Malaysian culture, we learn a little more about ourselves. we are all on a journey wither it is towards a personal growth spiritually or even to just better understand one another. we are all getting there, one step at a time. As Christians we have received the promise from God of eternal life. He never promised our journey would be easy, in fact He said it would be really hard. so we press on to see the goal.

“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,  looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls .You have not yet resisted to bloodshed, striving against sin.” Hebrews 12:1-4

Join the discussion One Comment

  • momo. says:

    I know I’m a little delayed in saying this Emily, but I think what you’re saying here is awesome. I’ve been finding it hard to associate myself with the concept of pilgrimage. I don’t quite see that this is a spiritual journey to a sacred place, but I also know that what we’re doing is much more than just tourism. I’ve been torn. Do I reluctantly call myself a pilgrim even though it doesn’t feel right? Do I disdainfully join the hawaiian-shirted masses?
    I think you’ve helped me find a term that I think really fits how I have felt on this trip. I am more than a tourist, and I am glad to find a way to describe how that feels.

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