Trains and Tunnels
My favorite ride at Disneyland is Big Thunder Railroad. It has been since I was a little girl, however, I didn’t get a real appreciation for this ride until I met Jman. Jman insisted that riding at night is the best way to experience this face paced ride. And now I agree, the ride clothed in darkness makes it more exciting.
I admit that I have a valid fear of the dark. I use to be able to see very well in the dark, however now, post-cancer, I don’t see as well. I wear glasses and have worn them since I was a child. I can navigate a place without my glasses well if I know the place. If it’s a new place I carry a flashlight or have a nightlight. It’s scary and I don’t tell people very often that I feel blind if the lights go out and I don’t have my glasses.
During cancer treatments, I often felt like I was in a tunnel. It was dark, damp, and stretched on forever. In the distance, I could see a small light and hear the ring of a train. For six months I felt isolated and in the dark. I was very afraid. Before chemo started I was afraid. During Chemo I was afraid. After chemo I was afraid. There are still days today, 6 years out, that I’m afraid. It’s not the same thrill-seeking fear that I feel when I ride Big Thunder. It’s more like the fear of being in a hotel room and trying to navigate toward the bathroom in the dark.
After chemo, I was wonderfully amazed that the pinprick of light at the end of the tunnel was not a train but actually a healthy day.
I love the way King David describes fear. He had a healthy understanding of fear. It was the place that separates him from God and instead of letting that fear crowd in and crowd God out, he cries out to God more. However I know that relief from that fear did not come instantly, King David learned how to survive with that fear.
I’ve learned the only way to survive the dark is to take a flashlight but also to cry out to God. And whether it be a tunnel or valley of Shadow. The only way through it is to keep moving forward and to keep calling out to God. God hears your cries and counts your tears, He walks beside you carrying a lantern and helps you navigate through the fear. I’m not isolated, but walking with my Heavenly father. It’s dark, and probably cold (I hate being cold) but It’s him and I. Then more people join me and together we walk through the tunnel and make it out to the other side.
Maybe all the tunnel are really just like Big Thunder, a thrill ride which is more fun with friends and family. And Its definitely more fun in the dark.
Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will not be afraid.
You are with me.
Your shepherd’s rod and staff
The Lord is my light, and he saves me.
Why should I fear anyone?
The Lord is my place of safety.
Why should I be afraid?
TTFN and God Bless you and keep you.