Walking from the backyard into the front yard Jackson keeps shuffling his feet. Glancing over His shoulder, He hollers, “I’m crying, Mimi.”
Every step He takes further from me he looks back. “I’m crying Mimi do you see me?”
I smile and say, “yes baby, Mimi sees you. Where are you going?”
No response, just a swish through the leaves and a glance to make sure I am still watching Him.
He finds comfort in the eyes of Mimi never losing sight of Him as He walks towards the road. “Mimi?” he calls. “Yes, Baby,” I reply. “I’m crying. Do you see me?”
“I always see you. Let’s talk about where you’re going?” Jackson would rather talk about His crying and make sure my eyes are on Him rather than talk about him walking away.
Aren’t we like this?
We want to know God always has his eye on us and He sees our pain. We don’t want to have a conversation about where we are going. That gets uncomfortable. It feels…probing.
I want to know God has His eye on me even when I don’t know exactly where I am going. Especially when I know I’ve gone the wrong way. Our wayward hearts can drift. Sometimes they can jump right out of the safety net God has cocooned us in.
David Knew This Too
The psalmist in Psalm 139 says, If I make my bed in heaven you are there but if I make my bed in hell, behold, you also are there.
God can make His light shine in our darkest seasons and in our worst decisions.
When we glance over our shoulder and whimper, we want to know He sees us. We want to know He follows us and that He has forgiven us.
His eyes remind us His heart is never far from us. When we stray, our hearts can condemn us reminding us someone has to pay. This only compounds the shame and pain with greater condemnation.
The payment was paid in full. Yes, fully. Nothing you do can make it more fully paid. The debt is reconciled. The cross is our reminder.
The wayward path always breaks hearts. Along the way, others get caught in the crossfire of our decisions, but mostly, our own heart gets broken. We crave the innocence of Jackson at three years old when He was longing most for my attention. He was comforted by knowing the one he loves is never far away. I wasn’t, my eyes were fixed securely on His sweet life.
We all crave this security.
Putting ourselves out of reach we scramble to find the ancient path. It seems ancient because, if we are honest, it’s been a long time of scrambling to get back on track with God. We make excuses while he patiently waits.
Can I let you in on a little secret? I don’t wait well. It seems I’m always searching but prone to coming up empty some days. I start thinking back to less complicated days. Days when I wasn’t driven to accomplish, or to be anything but what God created me to be, just me.
The ache to accomplish in life sneakily tries to override the pursuit of who you are meant to know.
Knowing things about God is different than knowing God. Talking about things in theory, is different than knowing things personally.
God loves to wreck our theories about Him.
Messing up the black and white, bringing in the gray so we have to wrestle things out with him. Through this struggle, we are no longer just satisfied with His eye on us. We want to climb right up into His lap.
We are no longer content just knowing He loves us, we want to experience this love up close. Close enough to hear the words, You’re safe. You’re deeply loved.
It’s as if every cell in your being says, “Papa, I’m home. Thank you for being my shelter. I am safe with you. My heart can rest because it’s not wandering. Floating for a place to land. Watching, to make sure you’re always seeing me.”
All of our hearts crave this. We want to know God never takes His eye off of us or his gentle hand away from us.
Knowing His hand is around us restores us when we have fallen short. When our walk becomes a crawl, may we continue to crawl until we can stand.
If you fall, be sure to fail forward into the arms who is waiting to catch you. Lifting you up with His grace. He isn’t browbeating you. Beating you down with every mistake. He corrects you to restore you to an upright position.
If you happen to find yourself shuffling from the back yard to the front yard, shuffling through the leaves, look up through the clouds. Look to the one who is always watching you and waiting for you to walk back to the front porch.