Monday, November 19, 2012

We Walk the Path Alone

You stand, alone, staring down the darkening path. No one can be seen. No one stands beside you. The trees disappear, becoming one with the shadows and fog and dark. Fear and loneliness settle into your heart and soul. You know you must make the journey, but are unsure if it can be done without any light, without any guide, without a friend.

They say to ask God for help. So you do. And to a degree, it helps. There is a small sense of security. You don't feel quite so alone, quite so frightened. But God can't hold your hand in the physical sense. He can't offer you that hug, or that light, in a true physical sense. And sometimes we need that physical help. We need to truly feel someone holding us. We need to truly hear those words of encouragement. We need to truly see that friend walking by our side.

And it's when you're needing these things that you find you are alone. Perhaps not always, and not in every sense of the world, but you are alone. You walk the dark, frightening path alone.

And should you try to ask for help?

You find that you've been abandoned. Those few you trust to hold you, to help you, to hear you - they don't believe you are worthy of the strength they can offer.

And so you find yourself sinking deeper into a pit of despair, a pool of self-pity. You find yourself feeling isolated and unworthy, and you hate yourself for it. And you hate those you had faith in. And you hate God. All because you have to walk the path alone.

I've walked this path before, on numerous occasions. I've pushed away those who refused to be there for me. I pushed away God. I have hated those whom I thought I could trust. Just when I start to think there is someone who believes I am worth it, I am reminded that I am not. Just when I think someone cares, I find they do not.

So what do we do when faced with the terrifying path facing us? What do we do when we need help? What do we do when forced to walk the path alone?


  1. This reflection on this particular experience of loneliness is compelling to my heart and my mind. But what about the way we want and sometimes even demand that people express their friendship and companionship toward on our own terms and according to our expectations and criteria?

    1. This is a very good point, Dennis. I think most of us tend to place expectations on friends - we expect them to be there for us when we want and how we want; and feel that loneliness when those friends don't meet those expectations. This is why some people turn from God as well - they expect Him to be there how they want, when they want. And while God is always with us, it isn't often how we expect.

      It takes a lot of emotional and spiritual maturity to realize that those who love us are there for us - maybe not in the way we want at that moment, but they are there. Love isn't about our expectations.


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