Our dog takes us for a walk every night. In fact, if I am not outside putting his leash on by 9:00, he knocks on the door to get my attention! My bride and I have enjoyed those nightly walks over the years. When the kids were at home, walking was “our time” to discuss the day, what the kids were facing and what issues were percolating. With the kids grown, it is still “our time” to connect on things that happened across the day or are on the horizon.
The primary benefit of walking for us is emotional – a time of winding down and tuning in. We had no idea that the physical benefit of a 3 mile loop could be so impactful. A recent study in the U.K. by Peter Elwood and a team from Cochrane Institute of Primary Care and Public health at Cardiff University followed 2235 men - almost all the male inhabitants of Caerphilly, Wales, with initial ages between 45 and 59 years old – for 30 years. They found that men who consistently did a few things reduced their risk for cognitive decline and dementia by a staggering 60%. The activity with the biggest impact on risk was walking at least 2 miles a day, biking 10 miles a day or engaging in some other regular, vigorous physical exercise.
Walking with: “Enoch walked with God; then he was no more, because God took him away." – Genesis 5:24. Enoch was Noah’s great-grandfather and was one of two men in all of scripture spared physical death. The other was Elijah. We don’t know a lot about Enoch except that he fathered Methusela when he was 65 and he lived a total of 365 years. Methusela was 187 when he fathered Lamech. And he was 369 years old when Lemech fathered Noah. As Methusela lived to be 969, he had a number of years to share all kinds of stories of his dad with his grandson. Evil influence was alive and well during Enoch’s life yet he was able to navigate through the presiding culture and be known as a man that walked with God, staying under the influence of Him and not the world. This was the legacy Noah embraced that enabled him to find favor in the eyes of the Lord as a righteous man during a wicked and evil time on the earth.
Who are you walking with? Are you focused more on your physical well-being than your spiritual well-being? Both are important but walking with God must be your legacy.
Prayer guide: Lord, thank You for Enoch’s example. While I enjoy physical walking and the associated benefits, I am convicted that I have not been near as diligent or consistent in my spiritual walk with You. Strengthen my resolve to begin walking with You daily by reading Your Word and praying, fasting and studying routinely. Keep me under the influence of You in these times, that my legacy will emulate Enoch’s. Amen.
A faithful father passes on the legacy of walking with the Lord in all he does.