My dad was behind his desk hard at work when I walked into his office that day after junior high. At the sound of my voice his face softened into a smile and he looked up.
The order of that was especially meaningful to me:
And then he looked up.
To my young heart, that said he had welcomed me even before he made eye contact with me. In that moment, I felt secure and valued by my dad; I knew he was glad to receive me and was interested to hear whatever I had to say. All these years later, I can still see his reaction in my mind and feel the love in that gesture. (He probably wouldn’t think there was anything remarkable about it; that was just his way.)
This morning that memory flooded back to me when I read this verse in the Psalms:
The psalmist’s meditation reminded me that my heavenly Father, too, always has His ear “turned to me”, waiting to hear from me. Whether I’m worshiping and adoring – or whining and complaining – He’s tuned in and aware.
Like my earthly dad, my heavenly Father pays attention because He loves me and is committed to pointing me in the right direction. He knows my heart, what I need, and the areas where I could use some work. As His child, He works to refine me so I will reflect His image. (Sometimes, I’m convinced, He just wants to hang out with me and be amused, which thrills me, too! )
I am painfully aware that not everyone grew up with the kind of loving, attentive father I did, one whose character and devotion helped form my understanding of the Almighty. It breaks my heart. I firmly believe every child deserves to feel what I did that day I saw my dad default to joy on recognizing my voice and respond with a welcoming smile. It was and is an invaluable gift.
But here is the sacred access that is available to us, regardless of our past or current situation: With even a small a measure of faith in the promises declared in Scripture, we can be certain that God is doing exactly that. He has His ear turned to us constantly, waiting for us to call on Him.
We don’t have to tug at his sleeve or perform some pious religious ceremony to get His attention. He’s been listening for our call since before we took our first breath. Even if we’ve never really known Him, or perhaps knew Him and rejected Him, He will continue to wait for the sound of our voice as long as we live.
The anticipation of hearing from us has Him smiling already.
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