Guest Blogger Sarah Raymond: Into the Wilderness

“You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition.”


Comfort, until about two months ago, was the dry Colorado air. Comfort was knowing that the mountains are to the west. Comfort was school, papers, and my college campus.

The wilderness, in contrast, is strange and unfamiliar. I’ve found myself using my GPS more times than I’d like to admit and missing people even more than I thought I would.

When I think of a wilderness, I think first of an overgrown jungle and then the desert with nothing except sand and possibly cacti. Quite the opposite images, right? Or not… A wilderness, really, is simply a place where your compass doesn’t always point north or rather, not the north you expected. It’s a place where there aren’t road signs detailing where and how you should go.

Harrisburg is a wilderness at times. It certainly felt so during my first week or two. But I’ve driven to work on auto pilot a few times already. I know where to get groceries and, more importantly, I know where the bookstores are and where the Chipotle is. I have not completely navigated through all that I’m doing at work, but I am slowly getting trained on using active listening and helping with the helpline and creating a volunteer recruitment plan.

My wilderness is becoming tamer. I do know where physical north is now (and I can use the river as a reference!) and I am working on clarifying my spiritual north. Will my wilderness ever become completely tame? I don’t know. After all, life is a wilderness of sorts and it changes constantly. But this year has already proved that I am not traveling alone. I have: Myself, my housemates, the wonderful people of St Stephen’s Cathedral, my family, and my friends back home.

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