'Walking with Jesus' program promotes prayerful exercise
The health committee of Pleasant Green United Methodist Church near Durham, N.C., offers an eight-week "Walking with Jesus" program for pre-Advent through Epiphany.
"It's tying together Bible study with exercise," said the Rev. Eilene Bisgrove, leader of the church's Health and Wholeness ministry.
"Walking with Jesus," in versions for children and adults, includes a pedometer, a four-page booklet with suggested Bible readings, prayers, educational information about journeys during the time of Jesus and a log to record miles walked.
"In Jesus' time, people walked just about everywhere," said Bisgrove, estimating that the average day's journey was about 18 miles.
The goal is for individuals or teams to walk 80 miles during the eight-week program to represent the journey of Mary and Joseph from Nazareth to Bethlehem.
A dozen adults participated when the program was introduced in 2005. After reading a scripture, they meditated about it while they walked or talked it over with a walking partner.
"I tried to picture Jesus walking in His day the dusty road, the scenery as I imagined it, the group He might be with and what it would have been like to be with Him," said church member Sandy Quinn. "There are many ways to read scripture and meditate. This one really places Jesus with me in spirit and friendship as I exercise both body and mind."
Bisgrove said, "We can be mindful of the fact that we never walk alone."
For more information, contact Bisgrove at firstname.lastname@example.org or (919) 477-5543.