Today was a first for me. I got off the elevator on floor 10, in my college apartment-style-living building. I was chatting away on the phone with a friend, talking about where to meet up for our trip to Trader Joe’s. During this conversation, I heard a faint mumbled cry in the background, “Help me! Help me!” Just before I got to my door, I turned around to see a small old man sitting on his walker backwards, shaking. I quickly got off the phone and ran over to him, asking what was wrong and if he was alright. Expecting him to explain some sort of deep pain he was experiencing, I got ready to call our public safety. Before this thought could turn into action though, he explained to me in a thick Russian accent that I wish carried over onto paper, “I am lost, I cannot find my apartment. My wife is in the apartment and I cannot find my apartment. I am lost.” He was extremely frazzled, though his apartment was about 30 feet away. I tried to hold back a small chuckle, and explained to him it was close enough for me to help him find it.
He motioned for me to grab the front of his walker. He stood up, and hobbled along as I slowly lead his walker to 10 C. A walk that typically took me 5 seconds, took us a few minutes as we slowly journeyed home. I have seen this man before, doing his morning exercise by walking up and down the hall, but I never imagined he would lose his way in such a simple building complex. Once we came to his doorstep, he instructed me to knock on the door that was propped open. I did so, and quickly a short woman with a polka dotted dress came to the door. She didn’t look surprised nor worried as I handed over her befuddled husband. Instead of handing her his hand, like a babysitter handing over a child, I handed her the front of his walker. He explained how he had gotten lost, to which she just nodded her head and thanked me. I walked to my apartment next door, and began to think.
How often are we so close to our home in Jesus Christ, the Place of Peace, yet at the same time so far away? He makes Himself available, appealing, and in fact absolutely necessary, yet we still journey away from Him and try to settle for peace in numerous other places. I try to find peace in sleep, peace in reading, or even peace by traveling to the suburbs for some time away from the ambulances droning outside my window. While these are not bad things, they ultimately get me lost, because what I am looking for is the Person of Peace who should be my consistent home. I may get lost countless times throughout my life, but once I return home to Him, He is never surprised. He always knew He was the best spot for my heart, soul, and mind to rest.
Just when I start to think my walk with the Lord is predictable, comfortable, or like the back of my hand, I am just far enough away from home in Christ, that I am lost. If your home is not in the consistent Person of Christ, you are lost, whether that is 30 feet from home, or 30 miles from it. Whenever you are not whole heartedly in Him, putting all of your hope, trust, and being in Him, you are thoroughly lost. But do not worry, He’s ready to find you no matter the cost. In fact, He already gave His life to bring you back home.
words by Kylie Hultgren and photo by Abby Melrose