Leaving Home

Posted on Jan 10, 2013 in Blog, Spiritual Practices | 6 Comments

Every pilgrimage begins with leaving the familiar and setting off toward the unknown.

We can spend countless hours planning and preparing for our journey, but not take the first step to leave the familiar bonds which hold us. It may be fear that keeps us there, or comfort, or inertia. We feel so at home there.

We need courage to start, as well as confidence and curiosity. We may be pushed by a desire to see what we have not seen, to sample what we have not tasted before.

Some of us may need to leave home more deeply than they need to arrive somewhere else. Some journey so they can share that they learn with others. Some are newly awake, and some try to forget.

You may be tempted to look back with longing after beginning your pilgrimage. You may struggle to recognize that you have already left home though not yet taken the steps that demonstrate your departure.

While we may travel together and help each other along the way, each of us is on our own pilgrimage. Like Chaucer’s pilgrims on the road to Canterbury, each of us has our tale.

Like our mythic heroines and heroes, we leave home and discover our challenges along the way. We may learn that the difficulties that we thought motivated us to leave are not the lessons we most need to learn.  On our pilgrimage we begin to recognize our truest, deepest selves.

Each step gives us gifts and teaches us lessons that draw us closer to who we can become.

Each day, the familiar recedes behind us as we walk into the unknown. Each day, one step at a time, we work our way forward.

Where is your pilgrimage taking you so far?

What lessons and gifts have you gained along the way?

[Image by fazen]


  1. Bob Holmes
    January 10, 2013

    Excellent Greg.

    I love the image of a pilgrimage…a journey and adventure with God.

    I’ve learned that all growth is outside of our comfort zone.

    Thanks Greg!

    • Strategic Monk
      January 10, 2013

      Thank you, Bob.

      I am fascinated by how people cling to what is familiar, even when it is painful or holds us back. Many of us believe very strongly in our own choices and have a deep-seated reluctance to let go and try something new.

      It is a very powerful experience to help someone see things in a new way.

  2. Maureen Devlin
    January 11, 2013

    I love the questions you pose, the growth your prompt. Thank you.

    • Strategic Monk
      January 11, 2013

      Thank you, Maureen!

      Thank you very much. Asking good questions, that prompt strong growth, can be a challenge. It is an art as well as a science, and I hope I am becoming better at it.

  3. Jon Stallings
    October 26, 2013

    Wonderful post. (also great writing style) It seems like the first step and the journey itself is what brings about the most change within ourselves. God often calls us to leave home to head to some unknown destination. i guess that explains a lot of where I am right now. I am on a journey to something so much deeper with God; something more than I have ever known or even thought about. It is scary and often full of doubt. Yet with the strength of His spirit I journey on.

    Thank you for your encouragement.

    (I found your site via a post by Bob Holmes)

    • Strategic Monk
      October 26, 2013

      Thank you, Jon.

      Yes. I think each step includes challenges of its own. The first step often seems like a very big risk, but the steps that follow carry risks of their own. While they may teach us different lessons, each part of our journey has things to teach us.

      It helps me when I am open and listening, not distracted by my own inner struggles.


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