I enjoy running on Deerfoot Parkway, a somewhat busy road which is close to my house. Although the basic physics of running involves perpetual pounding on the pavement (amazing how much stress the ankles can endure), the run is not too difficult as long as I run on the road and am mindful of the approaching traffic.
However, when a car approaches, I must veer to the shoulder of the road, causing the run to be not quite as pleasant. The shoulder is the typical gravel noticed along most roads. I can run on it when necessary but frequently I land on a sharp piece of rock, causing brief discomfort. I also have to dodge some of the debris which has been thrown along the road.
Yet, if possible, I try to run on the road, the smoothest and least obstructed path.
Year ago, I understand how this applied to kings and other royalty. If a king was going to visit a region, every effort was attempted to clear the road, to remove all debris, to allow the king to enter the area unimpeded.
In like manner, Isaiah 40:3 proclaims that we are to "...clear the way for the Lord in the wilderness; Make smooth in the desert a highway for our God." These words were later echoed by John the Baptist is announcing the beginning of Jesus' earthly ministry.
Sometimes in life we have to deal with the rocks and debris in life in order for God to work. Once the rocks are removed, the journey, although tiring like a long run, can be a little bit easier. As John the Baptist proclaimed, "Prepare ye the way of the Lord."