As she runs to me, I can literally “hear” the smile and joy on her face. A few steps from me, she will jump at me with a statement of 100% trust that daddy will catch her. I’ll grab her with both arms, swing her around a bit against my chest, and tell her I love her. At the same time, I’ll brush my chin stubble slightly against her neck and make her giggle and squirm, until she runs away. Most likely, the scene will repeat itself a few times.
She is two years old, and daddy is home. 🙂
Fast forward about 6 hours. All is quiet, and we’ve just settle into our evening. Whether it’s a movie, or reading time, or just talking about the day and week we find ourselves swimming through. All of a sudden, we notice that we’re not alone. Quietly watching from the shadows of the adjacent office, glowing in the dim light that escapes into an unlit room, is the face of a child.
It could be any of the three, on any given night. Not guaranteed to happen every night, but once in a while it occurs. I confess that my first thought is not to be a loving father. It’s usually more along the lines of a zoo-keeper who’s monkey has been found roaming the premises. 🙂
But as it happened the other night, it struck me with a powerful reminder: My kids need me. It’s not something in particular they want me to do. Nothing I’m required to fix, say, or pay for. It’s simply my presence they desire. A natural hunger and thirst to be close to their parents.
That won’t always be the case. They will grow up, and with time will come independence. There will probably even come times where they want to be as far away from mom and dad as possible. Of course, we won’t allow that, right? 🙂 So as I held my daughter close, and carried her slowly up the stairs back to her room…I savored the walk. I laid her down, and kissed her good night.
As always, it translates brilliantly and painfully into our relationship with Christ. In our most natural and child-like moments, we recognize our need for God. Not for His action or blessing, but simply His presence with us. To draw close to Him, our Creator and Father…for comfort. As we walk through life, there are times where we forget that need. We become self-sufficient and sustaining…always looking to finances, “highs” of all sorts, and other areas to quiet our withdrawal. Thankfully nothing will satisfy. Nothing but the presence and communion with God together as we were created for.
How will we respond to that truth this week? Imagine God entering the front door of your house: You’re 2 years old, and daddy is home. 🙂