Jay Welshonse

All Journeys Begin with the First Step

My journey began more than a few years ago and has taken me to a number of different places; so far, 35 states and two Canadian provinces and while serving in the Air Force, a couple of “other” places.

Much of my journey has been shared with my dear wife, my five beautiful daughters and my seven precious beyond belief grandchildren.

In some ways, I've also experienced something of a journey through God's church as well. I've experienced a number of faith traditions as my Father was Roman Catholic, my Mother was from the Reformed LDS church and much of my early childhood was in the Assemblies of God. It may have taken a little while, but it seems that God has not only called me to the Lutheran church, but it seems that the call has also extended into the ministry where I find myself eagerly engaged as a member of Luther's MDIV-DL cohort 4.

I guess a series of journeys is a good way for me to look at life in general. I've been on several myself and I am definitely looking forward to many more. Perhaps one of my favorites was quite recent. My wife and I took some time off this past summer and visited several national parks. One of our stops was a Glacier National Park. At one point we had found a small lake on the trail map and decided to—you get the theme now; go on a small journey to the lake. The journey was more difficult than we first anticipated, but each step brought us closer to what we called our own personal mountain top experience. Each turn brought new sites and new love for God’s creation, and although we were hot, tired and just a bit sore, we just wanted to keep going. In the end, it was all worth it. A cool lake, a refreshing breeze, the sound of the wind in trees and the cascading rush of a hidden waterfall greeted our efforts. And for a time we simply sat there and enjoyed the peace and the presence of the Creator. As we came back down, we were still tired, but energized and more than ready to share our experience.

God gives us the opportunities for many such journeys in our life. And while some may be more difficult than others, God is always there with us. I look forward to this journey with all of you.

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