In an attempt to tip-toe back from my long blogging hiatus, I'd like to share an excerpt from some of Wendell Berry's writings about his home in Port Royal, KY.
This writing got me thinking about what it means to really know a place - to be at home and at ease. I'm a creature of habit, I find comfort and rest in routines. The notion of letting my feet forge a well-worn path while my mind is free to wander suits me.
It also gets me thinking about the "paths" we journey on to connect with God - those familiar motions and disciplines that free us up to contemplate the greatness of God. We rightfully push ourselves to explore new paths, but invariably return to those places of sweet familiarity where we sense ourselves at home and at ease in God's presence.
The dog runs ahead, prancing and looking back, knowing the way we are about to go. This is a walk well established with us - a route in our minds as well as on the ground. There is a sort of mystery in the establishment of these ways. Anytime one crosses a given stretch of country with some frequency, no matter how wanderingly one begins, the tendency is always toward habit. By the third or fourth trip, without realizing it, one is following a fixed path, going the way one went before. After that, one may still wander, but only by deliberation, and when there is reason to hurry, or when the mind wanders rather than the feet, one returns to the old route. Familiarity has begun. One has made a relationship with the landscape, and the form and the symbol and the enactment of the relationship is the path. These paths of mine are seldom worn on the ground. They are habits of mind, directions and turns. They are as personal as old shoes. My feet are comfortable in them.
* Taken from "A Native Hill" by Wendell Berry