Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Lonely Fog

It's afternoon, and the fog is still just as thick as it was this morning when I left for the grocery store. The meteorologist's morning forecast echoed as I pulled out of the driveway, "There is .0 visibility on the roads due to fog. Major delays. Drive carefully."

I don't know all the science of fog, but I fully understand fog's present reality...

When it's thick, I can't see through it. When it's thin, I can't see well. And no matter what it's density, when it's present, I can't see as clear or as far as I normally can.

After bumping into my neighbor at the grocery store and hearing about her recent half marathon, I was encouraged to get back into my exercise routine and go for a run this afternoon... But I looked through the store windows at the fog and wondered, "What if a car doesn't see me? What if the fog hides me from the driver, and I get hit by his car?" 

So, I considered doing yoga inside and not running this afternoon instead.

Later, David and I ran an errand to the other side of town. I was glad we were running this errand together. It would have been more ominous if we had tried to find our destination by our individual selves. I couldn't see past the sides of the bridge as we crossed over the Arkansas River. The fog had hidden everything.

Even though we couldn't see far, or well, we pressed forward through the fog grateful that we'd been taught how to drive through it. We encouraged each other that the fog would eventually lift. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but Little Rock would not always be foggy.

On our way home, I reconsidered my exercise choices for the afternoon and realized I wasn't going to let the fog get in the way of me doing something I wanted to do. There was an easy way to be safe in the fog if I did choose to run: I could stay on the sidewalk. I could run where I'm supposed to run regardless if there's fog or not.

I've had seasons in life that were foggy. Seasons when present circumstances made it impossible to see any distance into the future. And within those seasons, I had moments where I was too fearful to put even one small foot in front of the other because I was afraid of what might be hidden in the fog.

I've had panic attacks so intense I thought I would never move again until someone found me and physically picked me up. I was entirely aware that just me by myself didn't have the power inside to overcome the phenomena overtaking my body.

The truth is, nobody has it in them to do it all by themselves. You don't. You've thought, "I just can't do it anymore." And you're right. We, by ourselves, can't do it alone. We're just built that way.

We were made to live life (all of life) in relationship with other people AND our Maker.

"Well, Lindsay, that's a nice sounding sentence there, but you don't know me, and I AM ALONE."

You don't have any friends, family, or co-workers? You live alone, work from home, and live off the land out your back door? Even if the answer to all of those questions is "YES," you're still not alone. I don't have an "out" for you. And believe me, you can try.

Because the One who made you has crosses plastered all over this world reminding you of the death He let His Son go through so that you and He could be in relationship.

So in our foggiest seasons, when we can't see more than one hour in front of us, and when one hour feels unmanageable, you don't have to go through that one hour alone. You don't have to fear the fog. You don't have to give into the paralyzing sensation anymore. The only thing you have to do is make a choice not to do it alone anymore.

Cause I'll tell you something, no matter what you try to make it feel better, it's not going to fill that loneliness you've got inside. The alcohol will numb it for awhile, the drugs will make you feel better for awhile, and the cutting will provide a different feeling instead... for awhile. The power, and the sex, and the money won't satisfy. You'll find yourself searching for numbness or a high as soon as you slow down for a second... Or, you might go searching for the means to an end to it all.

That thing that's missing from your life is the thing you were created for... relationship with your Maker. (Christians, that statement doesn't only apply to non-believers... We were all created to be IN relationship with our Maker.)

God isn't who you think He is. He wants to do your life with you. He wouldn't have made you if He didn't. You're here. No matter how you were conceived, you're here. You don't have an "out." You're the proof that the Maker of the Universe desires a relationship with YOU.

Jesus showed us that even in the middle of a storm, something much more ominous than fog, there can be peace when He is present. (Mark 4:35-41) The terrifying feeling of loneliness. The fear in the uncertainty. Peace can be present there. (1 Corinthians 14:33)

So, if you're in a foggy season, remember it's just fog. It will lift. And until it does, you don't have to live the way you're living... And, you certainly shouldn't feel like you're living it alone.

There's Hope that wants to walk through the fog with you. Choose it.