Multiple flights. Amtrak to Sacramento. Bus to Colfax. Then, someone would pick me up and take me the rest of the way.
The connection between my last flight and the train’s scheduled departure was tight. Not only that, but my googling had not given me total clarity for the means of getting to the station. I was pretty sure I could not walk there with my allotment of time. Oh, and I needed to have enough money to pay the train fare, so I couldn’t overspend on transportation to the train. What’s more, there was a rail system of transit that would not get me where I needed to go should I mistakenly alight upon the wrong train…
Leaving the airport’s sterile area, I saw no signs for amtrak. Nor did I see a train. The lady at the obligatory info desk told me a bus outside would take persons such as myself the several miles down the road to the station. Upon locating the bus, I learned that this was no complimentary service. Although not expensive, I had very little more than the train fare in my bank account. If this was not the right bus, and I paid for fare I didn’t need, I might not have enough to get where I needed to go.
The bus driver grunted some not-quite enlightening response to my inquiry as to the buses’ destination. Uneasily, I deposited myself into a seat. Time was moving on, but the bus was not. Lazily, it sat, with no apparent concern for the passage of time.
Finally there, I stumbled out of the bus. I was dazed and could hardly see straight. My limited experience behind locked car doors of inner city Chicago did not come close to this. Trash decorated the cement as if it were the proper place to dispose of such things. The people looked so hardened, as if city life had shown them more of violence than opportunity.
I had roughly 15 minutes. And the clock was ticking.
It was obvious you could not get to the train without some kind of pass, while I had been told you get the ticket once on the train. I examined the computer screens showing the options of where a person could go. Colfax was not an option. What now? This had to be the station, hadn’t it?
Despite the simplicity of a situation to any other person, God has a way of bringing us face to face with something that we cannot handle. Whether the battle finds us on the couch in our living room, or hundreds of miles out of our comfort zone, we will, sooner or later meet a giant. With no armor. No shield bearer. No human aid. Nothing.
I gazed around me at the quickly dispersing group of people who had just disembarked off the same bus as myself. Cold, unfriendly, or just as unfamiliar as myself, I saw no human to which I could turn. There was no one upon whom I could call for help but the Lord. In my extremity, the words of Proverbs 4:12 came forcibly to my mind. “When thou goest thy steps shall not be straightened”… Lord help me. The waves of fear beat about the sapling of faith with the fury of one who is set upon our destruction. What was I to do?