That Cold and Lonely Road
Psalm 139:9-10 – If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me.
As I’ve mentioned before, I travel for work….a lot. The past few times I’ve traveled for work I decided to do a little study. Now please keep in mind, this is not a scientific study or even anything remotely professional, but I wanted to get an idea of the kind of people I see when I travel.
To begin with, traveling for work is very difficult. While there were multiple reasons for the destruction of my past marriage, I place my job’s travel near the top of the list as an accomplice. In my current relationship with Mimi it has caused some friction as well.
The life of a traveler is very lonely.
So here is what I found in my unscientific, unprofessional study.
First, I park in the garage at BWI airport. To get to and from the airport, I need to take a shuttle. As I have been riding the shuttle, I look at the people riding and notice that, of the business travelers, most are unmarried. If the business traveler is married, it is most likely a woman. Almost all of the business traveler men I have seen on this bus are either unmarried or not wearing their ring (and I’ll get to that in a little bit)
After I get off the shuttle, I work my way through the security line. This line can range in time from 10 minutes to almost an hour, depending on the airport I am at. The business traveler is usually easy to spot. Either they are on a phone or looking into the distance. If they are traveling in a group, usually the talk is about business. I wish I had a nickel for every time I heard the words “make the sale” while standing in line at TSA.
After getting through TSA, walking through the concourse, the majority of the business travelers are either sitting aimlessly in the chairs on their tablets, iPhones and laptops or they are standing in line at one of the fast food places or they are arguing with the gate agent trying to secure free upgrades, more points, or claim a travel status that they don’t have.
But here is the interesting thing…
Almost all of them are watching people. A few are watching people simply to watch them, like I have been lately. But the majority of them, and this is across both men and women, are watching members of the opposite sex (or the same sex in some instances) with lustful eyes.
I sat at an airport restaurant and watched as three business men (yep, they had the obligatory suits on) ogled young women as they walked by or stood in line to get food. They made VERY crude comments about their body parts that I won’t repeat here. After they would speak about these women disrespectfully, they would laugh and say something along the lines of, “imagine what it would be like to be in bed with her.”
Matthew 5:28 – But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.
I’m not claiming I’m perfect. I’m a guy after all. But thank God that the Holy Spirit has given me power to not get excited by every woman who walks by me. During the time of my travels, God’s hand leads me.
I’m not big on lust. God has given us sexual desire…and it is good. But it is only good when it is directed in a God-purposed way. I’ve spoken a little bit about lust here when I tackled the masturbation question. And sexually craving your wife is a very good thing. Sexually craving a random woman on the street or a coworker or a friend is not.
MEN: When you are sitting there looking at some young girl’s breasts or rear end, think in your mind, “what if that girl was my daughter.” How does THAT make you feel now, men? Or WOMEN, think to yourself, “what if that boy was my son.”
Last year, I was standing in line at a hotel waiting to check in. As I was standing there, I saw these 4 business travelers, three men and one woman, all checking in in front of me. As they waited to get up to the front desk, one of the guys said, “Ok everyone, rings off. We’ll see who is the first to get lucky this week.”
THAT is deplorable!
Traveling is a lonely job.
It is not easy to be away from those you love, sometimes for long periods of time. And Satan is going to try and turn that to his favor. I have had situations in which I have been tempted. Years ago, I was in Allentown PA for a business meeting with a vendor from a coffee company. She was a very beautiful, young woman. It was a hot, summer day and she came up to my room to get me, wearing nothing but a bikini. I knew she was coming up to get me so I left my door ajar. When I came out of the bathroom, she was sitting on my bed in a very provocative pose.
I ran out of the room.
I could not believe that I was in that situation. Thankfully, the Holy Spirit moved me and I got the heck out of there. I left everything behind and ran.
One more story.
As I was on the shuttle heading back to my car a few weeks ago, there were three men, business travelers, on the bus as well heading to their cars. One man said to the other, “I guess it is time to put the wedding ring back on.”
Christian, we cannot avoid being in the world. But we can definitely avoid being what the world expects us to be. I am going to challenge each of you reading this (and especially myself) that if you are in a job that requires a lot of travel, to try and figure out a way out.
But if you can’t easily leave a life of travel, then you need to stay close to God. The Comforter of man will protect your family. The power of the Holy Spirit will keep your mind and soul focused on God alone.
And God does have a plan.
He will put you where you need to be at that time. But He won’t leave you alone in a place where Satan can destroy you. He will give you power to get through until you are ready for the next step.
James 4:13-16 – Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”— yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil.