Tuesday, January 22, 2008

God Is Near

Once again, my children have taught me a powerful spiritual truth. One day last week, I was on the treadmill and my wife was about to take a shower. She was going to leave our two boys in the living room watching TV while she went upstairs to take her shower. She explained to our 5 year old that I was in the next room if he needed anything and headed upstairs confident everything would be fine. Little did she know, how crazy things were going to get in only about 5 minutes.

Just so you get a good picture of how everything was set up, the boys were in the living room and I was literally just a few feet away. All my son had to do in order to see me was walk around the corner. We have a couple of infant gates set up in order to keep our little one from wandering up the stairs. So, basically the boys had no way of getting upstairs to their mother. If they needed anything though I was right there. Now, when I am on the treadmill I usually listen to my Ipod, and this day was no different. So, I'm working out and my wife is in the shower and neither of us can hear what is going on with our boys. Somewhere, within the 10 minutes I was finishing up on the treadmill and my wife was in the shower, our 5 year old hit panic mode. Either he had forgotten I was in the other room, or hadn't been listening when his mother told him, but he looked around and didn't see any adults. He got startled and tried to go upstairs, only to find the infant gates standing in his way. As anyone does when they are in panic mode, all reason went out the window. Apparently, he proceeds to run out the back door and then runs around the house to the front door in an attempt to get into the house that way so he can go upstairs. The front door, which stays locked pretty much all the time, is locked and he is unable to get in the house. To make matters worse, our 20 month old followed right behind him since he left the back door wide open.

They couldn't have been out there more than a few minutes when my wife gets out of the shower and hears screaming and someone banging on the door. She runs down stairs to find our two boys on the front porch completely hysterical. Meanwhile, Dad is finishing up on the treadmill and is oblivious to the whole thing. Thank God, they were both on the porch when my wife found them and not in the middle of the street or something worse.

After breathing a huge sigh of relief, God showed me something with the whole thing. Throughout our life, there are times when fear can creep in. It can hit us from any number of directions. Finances, marriage, career, health, future, you name it, fear can be generated from any of them. And when fear comes, there are times when our tendency may be to hit the panic button. You know those times when you can't see how to fix it. You find yourself at whits end, and all hope is lost. Its moments like this, when like my son, all reason flies out the window and can give way to some pretty crazy decisions on our part.

Here's my point to the whole thing. In the middle of it all, God is near. Just like in my sons' story, where I was right there, our heavenly Father is right by our side. Of course, he doesn't have an Ipod on and he isn't oblivious to what's happening, but the point is, he is there with us regardless of whether we feel him, see him, or hear him. God is there, and in order to find comfort in those crazy times, we simply have to run to him. We have to learn to find him in the middle of it all. Sometimes that may seem difficult when we find ourselves surrounded by all life's stuff, but trust me the more we do it, the easier it gets. God is our refuge, our peace, our defender, and our ever present help in time of trouble. So, when life hits hard, look for him. Trust me, God is near.

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