One pauses where the trail goes four ways. Temptation of any kind is simply willingness to refuse God. The dog waits, too. You have to decide: you do.
Freedom is not about satisfying want which cannot be satisfied. Desire is natural but still. What emerges from the fear of scarcity cannot yield abundance. We choose the familiar, and it chooses us, and what is unfolds accordingly.
Here and there we leave the trail: to search for bears, to sit quietly in shadows, to pray on our knees. Words light the way, or seem to. My solitude is unperfected but sincere, a product of the "yes" I whispered decades ago in these same woods. Those who follow must attend their own salvation.
How broken we are, who long for the other, as if any body or thing can replace God. Coming home, letting the chickens out, I feel sad and lonely because of it. Such numinous greens this time of year, this hour of the day: how many gifts do we refuse while pressed in the service of a dream? I profess my unworthiness and go on, ever deeper into the interior forest, mapless and stumbling, but happy.