The Narrow Way

Usually when I type up posts for this blog, I take at least an hour to gather my thoughts and type them up. Yesterday I wanted to type up a theme that captured our philosophy of life. I felt like this post just really came to me and I just typed what was fresh in my mind without considering it too much. It probably took me only 5-10 minutes to type this up. The inspiration for it came from the greatest memory of my grandpa who, as you learned in the previous post, passed away this morning.

My grandparents were camp hosts in the Sierra Nevada mountains several years ago. I have a lot of great memories there going fishing, swimming, feeding chipmunks, etc. But the greatest memory I have from that time was when my grandpa Kramer and I went for a walk to the store from the campground. On the way to the store we took a narrow path through the woods. As I was walking ahead of him, I came to a fork in the path and started to go the wrong way. My grandpa quickly corrected me and set me on the right path. But as we continued down the path, he took the opportunity to describe a metaphor that still sticks in my mind today and is the inspiration for the following words.
When each of us are born into this world, we embark on a lifelong quest to find the greatest amount of happiness in life. We are all motivated by a drive for pleasure and the fleeing from pain. All of us are influenced by the environment around us. 
Some of these environments close our minds and tell us that the greatest happiness to be had is where we are currently at. 
Others tell us that there is greater happiness to be had but we come to believe we are unworthy to receive this happiness. 
Others are placed into an environment where we are on the path to the greatest happiness but somehow along the way we have been deceived and taken from the path that leads to the greatest happiness that we all desire. 
We all travel down different paths. The path that Candice and I follow though has proven to be good. Along this path, there is forgiveness, patience, kindness, selflessness, love, prosperity, wisdom, and every good and perfect gift that leads to abundant life. Candice and I have found that path and we are leading our kids down it. Along the way, our desire is to enjoy the time together as we hope to guide others to the right path. We desire to see those who are suffering see an end to it and choose the way of happiness. Candice and I have unity in purpose down this path. We are not trying to steer our kids down separate paths. We want them to be with us there in the end to enjoy what we have enjoyed. Yet Candice and I do not travel down this path unequipped. We have a map that shows us where to go and we are constantly gaining wisdom in how to read it so that we will always choose the right path. Our hope for all who come into contact with us is that they see the blessing that comes from the journey down the path we are on. It is the way, the truth and the life. We hope that this joy is not perceived as being false and exaggerated or that we are standing in the path and asking others to go before us before we have the courage to go. We hope to take the lead and teach our kids to do the same. We don’t know which obstacles lie down this path but we know the destination which is to someday be in the presence of the one infinite, personal God. On the way, Candice and I will help each other and our kids navigate this path and help each other through the obstacles and enjoy the sights along the way. 
Thank you Grandpa and Grandma Kramer for blazing the trail and sewing the seeds that have produced what we enjoy today.