I went hiking in Sedona last weekend

I went hiking in Sedona last weekend.

But I was a bit nervous because

The hike would be the first of its kind for me.

Upon arrival, I looked up and saw hikers climbing a massive spire.

From my vantage point, it seemed impossible.

We had only a few hours, so we hurriedly entered the trial.

I was focused.

With each step, I looked down, making sure not to trip on loose rocks.

The pace was feverish.

But then we came upon an older man, who smiled.

We stopped.

The man encouraged us to slow down and enjoy the journey.

After a short chat, he pulled something out of his pocket.

It was a stone, hand-carved, in the shape of a heart.

The man gave one to each of us.

He smiled and kept walking.

For the first time during this hike, we paused.

To our surprise, we were more than halfway up the trail.

We decided to slow our pace.

After each step, we took in the majestic surroundings.

Soon after, in the distance, we came across two deer playing.

It was beautiful.

At that moment, I realized we reached the peak.

We accomplished what I thought was impossible.

Better yet, I enjoyed each step.

I reached into my pocket and took out the heart-shaped rock.

I thanked the man for reminding us to slow down.

Having goals is important, but it’s the journey that’s the real reward.

The Journey Is The Reward

Christian Banach

Christian Banach

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