My son left last night, going home to his apartment, and I barely said “goodbye” to him. I don’t love him any less. I just wasn’t “there”. My wife talks to me sometimes and can get so frustrated. Because, if I am doing anything, she knows I am not “there” for her.
God, and in turn Jesus, promised that He would not leave us. “I will never leave you or forsake you,” and, “lo, I am with you always,” are quotes from each of them. But for many of us, it can have a hollow ring to it. Particularly after we’ve walked a while in Christian circles where patience is lauded as such a virtue but the acquisition of it is so often ridiculed.
I think about the vastness of the universe and can feel so small on God’s priority list. Why should He, or would He care about my needs?
My grandson was born and I got to hold him for the first time yesterday. He is so tiny with very few needs. His older brother is two and vastly more mobile, with greater needs. Their mom, her husband, my sons, my wife all have needs. They place demands on my limited resources but I don’t want to just feed them or put a roof over their heads, give them some money (that’s a joke only my family will understand), or great spiritual guidance. From the newest, least demanding, to the wife who wants all of me, I want to be “there”.
But God is. When He says He won’t leave, it is a promise to see us, to hear our needs, to be engaged in the conversations we have. And what is vastly more amazing to me, He WANTS to be “there”. He calls me to be “there” with Him. He loves me more than I love Him. His promise, the promise of His presence with me, does not overwhelm Him, bother or irritate Him.
He is my friend.