In His Presence always, even when I am too busy.
My youngest child, Lydia lives in Tucson Arizona, which is about 2,200 miles away. I don’t get to see her very often so I always look forward to her calls and visits. A few months ago, I was really upset that she hadn’t called for a while, to spend quality time on the phone with her dad. A few weeks went by and after not hearing from her I texted a smart remark that she must be too busy for dad because of her hipster life style. It didn’t take her long to reply that she still loved her dad and I could contact her anytime but she was not a hipster, but a mother of two children, a wife, working a full time job and trying to figure out this thing called life. I apologized quickly!
I have been doing a lot of reflecting about my life over the last year about my success and my failures. I wish I could say I had a lot more success then failures over the last thirty years but unfortunately that’s just not true. It may also be that the incident with my daughter caused me to look at an area in my life where, for the longest time I felt like the biggest failure; my daily devotions. I love to read, and I enjoy spending time with the Father, but as far as engaging Him on a consistent basis in a systematic way, that has never been my strength. I always seemed to allow the busyness of my life and ministry to get in the way. I would get in the pulpit and preach with the best of them how we should pray and read God’s word and then I would go home feeling like the biggest hypocrite.
One Sunday morning I went into the sanctuary as my normal habit every week and while I was sitting there just resting in the Lord I felt like the Father said to me, “good to see you son, I look forward to this hour with you every Sunday.” To my surprise He didn’t say, “where have you been”, or “why haven’t you stopped by all week,” but more like, “it is so good to see you and tell me about your week?” While I was sitting there in the quietness of the sanctuary I realized, that early in my life I formed a habit that has lasted for thirty years. Every Sunday morning I get up really early just so I can be the first one to church to visit with my Father before anyone else gets there and interrupts our time together. This time with the Lord reminded me of how I enjoy the time I have with my children even if it’s once a week by phone or just hanging out after church on Sunday with them. Their lives are full and busy, just like mine was at one time raising four children, pastoring a church, and everything else I thought I needed to be involved in. Good parents don’t make their children feel guilty because they haven’t had the time to spend with them. Good parents are secure parents, and are always welcoming their children even if its just a phone call to say hi!
Enjoy reading the Bible through for 2017 and if you don’t accomplish reading it all, you have read more then you normally would have read. Remember, it was Jesus who said;
“And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”(Matthew 28:20 NIV)