Yesterday I saw a child walking with his grown-up across a parking lot. He was just about mid-thigh high to the man, holding hands, and talking as they proceeded. As the child kept up the adult pace with his quick little steps, his head was darting back and forth from the path of where they were walking, to the direction of the man. He obviously wanted to see the object of his animated conversation, as well as watch where he was going. I wanted to keep watching them, but we were headed into an appointment and I had my own person to keep up with. However, I couldn’t get the little fellow out of my mind all day.
Lately I’ve been hearing what could be called a cliché in the Christendom. When I hear someone say, “God showed up” at a particular time for them, I feel concern that they may have missed out on walking with God. God is omnipresent, and omniscient – all-knowing and present everywhere at the same time – for all eternity. Highlights from Psalm 139 tell us this. “Oh Lord, You have searched me and known me, You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off….not a word on my tongue, but behold, O Lord, You know it altogether…such knowledge is too wonderful for me;… where can I go from Your Spirit?…If I ascend into heaven…make my bed in hell…take the wings of the morning…dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there, Your hand shall lead me, and Your right hand shall hold me.” (verses 1-10 in part) As for our access to Him, “in whom (Christ Jesus) we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him” (Ephesians 3:12). So, I can’t think of God in terms of simply ‘showing up’ at times of dire need. When we respond to God’s invitation to live an eternal life with Him, we are like the child walking hand in hand with his or her grown-up. God is there whether we are paying attention or not. He is there to lift us when we stumble, fall, and reach out for help. He is also there by our side protecting us, pulling us along when we need encouragement, and never unaware of our steps. We are led by the hand of God’s Word; we are comforted and heard by the Holy Spirit just as Jesus promised as He was leaving to sit at the right hand of God the Father. I do get it though, when speakers are expressing their belief in God’s interventions – they mean to give God the credit for the good that came out of a situation, or the rescue they experienced. And that is good! I’ve been guilty of clichés like “it was a God thing” or “a God moment’ so I know what they meant. But hearing that lately, coupled with the walking twosome, I felt God showing me a similitude for His presence. But to phrase it as ‘God showed up’ just somehow cuts short the constant relationship God’s children have with Him.
After observing the child and his precious walk with his grown-up, I thought about our walk with our heavenly Father. Thankfully, we do not have to worry whether or not He is seeing and hearing us. We don’t have to settle for just glancing in His direction like the little tyke who found it impossible to get a good look up into the man’s face and watch his own step at the same time. No, we can stop, and look fully into His marvelous face, which is in fact His desire. (“Be still and know that I am God” Psalm 46:10). He is not bound, bent, nor burdened with the cares of this world as our earthly grown-ups are. Nor is He racing the clock. He made time itself, and takes all of it He wants to accomplish anything He wants to. So as He holds our hand in traveling our time here, we have a constant defender, helper, and guide. Isn’t it grand to picture ourselves as that little boy I saw yesterday, carefree to talk our entire heart out to our Father, knowing that if we DO keep our eyes on Him, we will never lose our way and nothing can come between us.
Dear God, I ask You to bless us with the peace of knowing a closer walk with You. It is my prayer that my words bring encouragement to others and glory to Your name. Keep holding my hand Lord; thank You for this and all other blessings. In Jesus’ name, Amen.