Earlier this week I awoke before dawn to meet a bunch of people I did not know, to go running in a place I’ve never been. As the morning and run progressed, I found myself alone, with only the rhythm of my feet and breath to keep me company. After enjoying several minutes of this tranquility, a fork in the trail appeared and I realized, I had no idea which way to go. With the split rapidly approaching, I scanned the horizon to look for any sign of the runners ahead of me. When all was close to lost, I spotted a trace of neon blue moving through the brush, indicating the way. When I caught the runner, I thanked him for being my “sign post.” To which he laughed and said, “No problem, I was just following the people ahead of me.”
In thinking of the people who have gone before us, I began to think of the Christian faith and of all the great men and women who have gone before us whose stories and efforts, told and untold, have helped perpetuate the record of God’s story of redemption. During this period of musing my heart went to a place of deep amazement and gratitude. I am thankful I don’t have to reinvent the wheel. I am thankful for the countless stories I have at my disposal to learn from if I only seek. Somewhere in this flurry of thought arose the old adage, “those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.”
While pondering the optimal path at the crossroads of life, if it is possible, seek the forerunners. Seek the wealth of wisdom from their success and failures. As Solomon put it, “there is nothing new under the sun.” Thank God we don’t have to do this alone.