Friday, February 2, 2007

Bilbo's Perspective

I find a good deal of wisdom while reading Tolkien.

In the first chapter of The Fellowship of the Ring, Bilbo Baggins is preparing to leave his life-long home, never to return. (Much like Abraham, he is unsure of his destination, but feels called to go.) The wizard Gandalf tells him to take care of himself. Here's Bilbo's reply:

Take care! I don't care. Don't you worry about me! I am as happy now as I have ever been, and that is saying a great deal. But the time has come. I am being swept off my feet at last.

Then he sings softly to himself,
The road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.

My wife (Dawn) and I made this poem a part of our wedding vows (17 and a half years ago). We changed the first-person pronouns and verbs from singular to plural, and alternately recited the phrases to one another.

I'm going to trust you to make the rather obvious application to your own life journey, to think about what Tolkien was suggesting here. What I want to do, though, is to apply this concept to blogging.

I've stepped off the porch! I'm heading down the front walk. I'm committed to the journey, and (like Frodo once he'd left Rivendell) I have comrades to help me along, friends whom I'd be ashamed to face if I turned back without getting very far. But--and here's the point--while I may have an idea about where this blog will take me (and whoever else walks beside me for however far), I really cannot foresee the twists and turns in that road.

So I expect that this blog--like life itself--will be dynamic, organic, and unpredictable, even to me (its author). And isn't that part of what makes life worth living--the adventure and uncertainty, the surprises (good and bad)?

May your life be blessed with an abundance of adventure! But as Bilbo would say, that begins by stepping out of your own front door.

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