I just returned from a five and a half day "road trip", mostly for my vocation ministry with meetings and connecting with some of my Franciscan Sisters, but also with a side trip to Southern Oregon to visit with my 96 year old mother. I traveled many miles during those days across LOTS of open space from the west side of Oregon, to eastern Washington, on to eastern Oregon, and down through central Oregon before getting back to Portland. I saw a variety of scenary as I traveled along - all beautiful in it's unique way ...
I was alone, but not lonely. Traveling often becomes a prayerful, solitude time for me as I soak in the beauty of the surroundings and contemplate God's presence in the world! It's a great thinking time as well. I sometimes travel for miles without the radio on or music, but since this trip was so long I was also listening to a "book on tape" (it was really a CD) ~ "The Restless Heart" by Fr. Ronald Rolheiser. A quote that Fr. Rolheiser made reference to was from St. Augustine, "...You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you ..." I think that is why I really do not feel lonely or restless when I am driving down the road ~ when I see the vastness of our world and the beauty of nature and creation around me, I feel close to God!
Like St. Francis I say:
"Most high, all powerful, all good Lord! All praise is yours, all glory, all honor, and all blessing. To you, alone, Most High, do they belong. No mortal lips are worthy to pronounce your name ... Be praised, my Lord, through our sister Mother Earth, who feeds us and rules us, and produces various fruits with colored flowers and herbs... Praise and bless my Lord, and give thanks, and serve him with great humility."