Its been a little over a week since my parents both went to the U.S. leaving me all by lonesome – guarding the house and acting as a figurehead of the ‘pastor’s family’ while the pastor is away. So far, its been – challenging.
The first few days, I decided that the sooner I got into a comfortable routine that kept me fairly active – the better I would adjust to being alone. This, after all, isn’t the first time I’d been by myself for long periods of time. Still, I’ve been feeling increasingly antsy as the days go by. Its not that I’m busy (far from it) and not that I’m afraid of being alone – its a whole lot of things. But despite my best efforts, my frustrations continued to mount, I continued to gorge on self-made ‘remedies’ and slowly, whatever resolve I had made to ‘clean and healthy’ living – was wearing thin.
None of my friends were free to spend time with me today and so, I was left to wander around Hong Kong by myself. I had already visited my regular retail haunts – but I could not find any satisfying relief from the wave of melancholy. I could have just gone home, but I knew that if I did, I would simply fall into sin.
Honestly, the last few days, I find myself indulging on unsavoury things – a little less pure, a little less admirable, a little less productive – its a slippery slope. I don’t know why I never learn – I know where this road leads and while it may take just one slip to go down, it’ll be one hell of a trek to go up again.
When I finally got too tired, I decided to get some dinner. I ended up finding a comfortable spot at Starbucks – tucking into an overpriced chicken and mushroom pie with my favourite green tea latte (soy milk). As I sat, I watched as people of different ages, races and paces walked passed and idly listened to the animated chatter of the people in the cafe. I wasn’t really analyzing what I saw or heard (or smelled for that matter) but only tried to find some solace from the loneliness ebbing inside my chest.
I picked up my journal and wrote to God.
Am I supposed to learn something here? This loneliness is driving me crazy. I’m losing more battles and not winning them. I feel really weak right now. Please, help me understand. Help me see what I can’t see.
And not long after, God started to speak. (and I began to wonder why I didn’t go to him in the first place). God ministered to me so lovingly – coaxing out my truest and most honest feelings and showing me that there was nothing to fear. He led me to Psalm 23 (perhaps my all time favourite psalm) but this time, he spoke in the first person.
…I am your Shepherd. I will satisfy you and you will want for nothing…
He went on and on with that psalm. Though I have heard the Lord speak to me through Psalm 23 before, never had I felt him speak so personally. The sound of his voice soothed my nonsensical worries and his presence filled my heart and mind and I was no longer alone.
It felt fresh. Like refreshing rain in the desert. Like ravens feeding you in the wild.
It was only then that I began to see, there might be a point to all this after all. Perhaps, I will stay a little longer here in the wild.