The Journey

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Around her, trees explode from the ground. These giants rise far above the sky. The sun shines, but the canopy cover only lets pricks of the light invade the forest. She is walking down a well worn, rock and mud path. She is tired and alone yet, acutely aware that she is not alone. This place seems vaguely familiar, like something she saw in a dream or read about in a book. Yet, it is completely unfamiliar. She takes baby steps, crawling through the debris. Sometimes she is unaware that she is barely moving, and sometimes she goes for days before realizing that she has stopped altogether. Longing fills her soul day and night, but she can’t tell if it a good longing or a longing that will rot her from the inside out. The air is still. Yet, it is as hurried as Times Square during the holidays.

She calls out, calls Him by name. No response.

The hurried silence seems overpowering in these moments. This isn’t the first time she’s called His name. She looks behind, sees the tangle of thorns she crawled through, sees the lake in the distance where she rested. Yet, they all seem so far away as if the next step, this step is the most important.

Her feet, tired and swollen, cut up and bruised, want nothing more than to give up, give in. Her hands, only slightly battered, ache for more challenges. Her heart, torn between desires feels the most confused. She looks at the path. Is this the right one? To her left and to her right are other paths. Are those the right ones?

She calls out, calls Him by name. No response.

An ache fills her chest. In this all too familiar yet alien place, she weeps. With every tear a beat fills her chest, shakes the forest.

One more step. One more step. One more step.

Step by step, her heart whispers. Or is it her heart?

I AM here.

All else fades around her. Her whole world goes black except for her tiny feet on the treacherous ground.

One more step.

Step by step.

I AM here.

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