We live in a fallen world and as such, pain and hardship are a part of our lives. But some people seem to be able to cope with adversity and persevere while others never seem to recover. What makes the difference?
Life as a journey is an apt metaphor. It is the idea that at the end of your life your honors and achievements are less important than the path you took to get there. But a journey with a specific purpose becomes a quest. When the purpose or mission of a quest is spiritual in nature it becomes a pilgrimage.
Our entire life here on this world is a pilgrimage, a word that embodies adventure, journey and quest all in one. Saint Augustine saw this as far back as the 4th century. We are on the path to eternal life and our mission is to purify ourselves so that we are fit for that life and to bring with us as many as we are able.
Like any journey, along the way we will experience joy and sorrow, good times and bad, exhilaration and defeat. But we can persevere through all that because we know we are not alone, Christ walks beside us every step of the way. We are all on our own "road to Emmaus."
We know that God can bring good out of evil and so we have the strength to bear the blows inflicted upon us by this fallen world. Christ's victory over this world will be ours as well.