New country, new fears. Country girl in the big city kind of fears. Being in a foreign country kind of fears. Being in an Arab nation kind of fears.
Last year on our first visit I swear I saw only men. Men filled the Metro. Smelly men. Staring men. Where are the women? They were there, I just was overwhelmed by the numbers. Only one Metro trip on my own. Found the Women and Children’s car! Smiling faces, not smelly. A little fear leaked out, dissipated.
Second trip, most of the time spent with my husband. A few short trips to the mall on my own. Noticing more women walking alone, shopping alone. More leaks and dissipation. Comfortable. Sort of.
One way ticket trip. This is different. We live here. Sucked back those dissipated leaks. Alone, going for walks, shopping, living, walking routes, getting around. Buying a cell phone.
Buying a cell phone. Alone. A simple task, right? I tried wading through the online information. Too many choices, too many things I did not understand. Why did I wake up grumpy, stressed, fearful? The cell phone counter at the Carrefour is often 4 or 5 people deep, the smelly deep. The counter staffed by those with accents so thick that English seems like a foreign language.
A walk around the “lake” brings a bit of calm, reading the Word, brings even more. James 1. Joy in trials. Does buying a cell phone count as a trial? Steadfastness, let it have its work in me.
I head to the Metro with sweaty palms, fear leaking out but not dissipating. Thankful for the Word ringing in my ear, filling my soul with courage. Weak courage, but courage none-the-less. Plodding on determined to face this.
I want a phone with a keyboard, not fancy, call, text or SMS as it is referred to in these parts. Will I be able to explain what I want? Oh dear.
Enter Carrefour, no line…what? I walk up and the staff member who, begins to help, has pretty good English. I tell him what I want. Two choices. I choose yellow. He then hands me over to a staff member whose English is impeccable! I choose cell phone companies, he graciously installs the SIM card for me and activates it. I pay and leave. Twenty minutes, max. The leak turns to gush and vaporizes. Gracious God, always with me, progress toward steadfastness and joy, made.
Sometimes I forget that steadfastness works both ways. I certainly need to learn long suffering, patience, trust! What I need to remember is: God is steadfast. ALWAYS. ALREADY. He does not need to learn it like I do.
I am sure this won’t be the last time I have to face a fear or do something on my own. Forget not. Remember the steadfast love of the Lord!
“Let them thank the Lord for His steadfast love,
for His wondrous works to the children of man!
For He shatters the doors of bronze and cuts in two the bars of iron.”