EVEN THOUGH I'd lived as a foreigner in Turkey for many years, I'd always been afraid of riding the city bus. It's silly, I know, but even the thought of having to go out on my own — walking, driving a car, or riding in a taxi, much less on a crowded bus — would bring on a panic attack. However, recently I had to face up to the challenge of getting around Ankara by myself.

I started going to the gym every weekday. My husband would drop me off on his way to work, but since it wasn't possible for him to pick me up, I decided it was time to start using the bus and trust in God's care for me. The first step up to board the bus was a tough one (I was literally trembling with fear). But once I got seated, I forgot about my inner turmoil and started paying attention to the route we were taking. Soon we turned off onto a road that took us to the main entrance of a hospital. At that stop, several people boarded, and I thought about how they possibly were sick, tired, poor, confused, heavy-hearted. Maybe they had been up all night nursing a loved one. Maybe they had just been told there was nothing that could be done. Young children. Old men. Pregnant women. You name it, it was there. The whole of humanity seemed to be represented in the passenger list.

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