Here I sit, in the dark, in another hotel room; 3000 miles from the people I love, especially the woman I love. For 20+ years I have been a ‘business’ traveler. I have scaled the ladder of mileage programs from nobody to Executive Platinum, and back down the other side, and you know what? It’s all about the same. There are those who would disagree with me, but I have a million plus miles, so I do have some experience. Waiting in a noisy gate area, delays, delays, and more delays, then standing in line to board, and then getting jammed into a seat designed by the Marquis de Sade, and finally LEAVING loved ones. As I sit here and think about it, I traveled BEFORE laptops and iPods, cell phones and Blackberries (or Crackberries). Time has certainly flown!
And I really dislike travel on Sunday as this is the day when many children are being sent back to one parent or another. It was true again today; a father walked his small son up to the gate agent; she dutifully placed a tag around the boy’s neck with his ticket and ‘vital’ information in it, and the agent took the child’s hand (he gave it reluctantly, clinging to his dad as long as possible), and walked him down the jet bridge. As I watched the father, he walked along outside the glass, paralleling his son’s path until he could no longer see him, and then, turning away, he slowly, almost imperceptibly, wiped a tear from his eye. The boy was returning to his mother, on the same flight as me, 3000 miles away from dad. Is it any wonder that God hates divorce?
I also dislike traveling on Sunday because this is the day when my extended family gets together (my church) and I look forward all week to seeing everyone. I truly love the people that God has placed in this little roadside church. We are not very upscale, and we don’t have a lot of frills (matter of fact, I don’t think we even possess ONE frill, much less two!), but I believe that we care about one another. These people have come to mean as much to me as anyone in my life, save my wife whom I love beyond words. This is my day to spend as much time as possible with them and traveling on this day cuts into that. Sometimes I wonder why they put up with a traveling pastor, but I am glad that they do. My life has been enriched beyond words by my friends.
So, here I sit, in a darkened hotel room, alone. This must be what bone-tired feels like…