Written on November 13, 2017.
“Should we chase him?” a voice behind me said. I looked back, uncertain what to say. My heart was aching already. The man had caught my eye just moments before as I made my way from the checkout to the door. Our eyes met for a brief moment, though I sought his to remain.
Days before, I heard a quote, “halfway happy” and I thought if I could encounter him with a smile, we’d be halfway happy and could possibly go all the way there together. But he was a bit frantic, with eyes darting to and fro. Upon his frame was a jacket, though it was a warm fall day. His dash through the door not only jostled me a bit, but set off the security alarm.
I’m not sure what he had hidden away within the folds of his jacket. I just know it’s not what he needed.
As my newly formed neighbor and I crossed into the parking lot, the man was gone, but my thoughts of him were not vanquished. Tears trickled as my car engine began its rumble and I prayed what came first. “Search him and know him.”
Five little words spilled from my lips without even a tangle or trip. For they were familiar, falling forth just a day before. There are times, when your deepest need bleeds through in the most shallow place.
The morning before was my turn to feed our horses. Even the rote should find us ready. Find me it did not. The metal lid came free from the can with a whiff quickly met by my groan. Empty. Lid two’s lift revealed the same fate.
The grumpies inside started knocking on each other’s doors swift and strong and entered right into my chorus. “My person always keeps the cans filled. How could have he missed it? He wasn’t thinking of me at all.”
In an instant, I grounded myself from grateful. Tempted and tipped my heart right away from thankful.
The truth that he always does this beautiful serve for me should have crushed the complaint quicker. Even so, gratitude rose up to grind my ax to the point of an awl, not pointing a finger, but piercing my heart open.
“Search me and know” whispered from my wretched.
Search me, God, and know my heart. Test me and know my thoughts. See if there is in me any harmful way. And lead me along the eternal way. Psalm 139:23-24
I would need the fulness of this verse a bit later in the day when I issued one of my infamous microphone confessions. I really don’t keep myself purposed to confess to my person publicly. But sometimes I’m in the middle of a string of words that unravel me. The very thing I’m speaking of resonates right out of me.
Most often, the result is gooey eyes in my direction. But as Aragorn once said, “Not this day.” The pain peered right out of his eyes as he asked himself questions not so different from the ones I had given way to that morning. “How could I have let her down? How did I miss that?”
The truth was, he didn’t. For the next day discovered that the can I vilified as void was near brimming over. All cap “YIKES!”
Twinged and throbbing, I spoke again the words from the morning, this time as a response instead of a reply.
For “search me and know” is my most awe inspired answer to “be still and know.”
Fortunately, my inward storms sputter far more than gale. But I’m grateful that when the warning flag whips in the wind of me, He leads me right back to His endless, boundless, and timeless. To His constant, even as I move away from always.
Search means “to be found.” To be probed in His presence is my pleasure.
The God whose breath brings universes and galaxies will not exploit my wicked but explore my wonderful.
He will remind me of the delight of my design and restore me to it.
Caught and carried I prayed for a man with a trinket tucked. That gratitude would graze his heart and he could find himself willing to be found.
Storied: Journal a time when Pappa found you on the run and stilled you so you could be searched. And found.
Beyond: As the holidays approach there will be many who fear what they lack more than awe what they have been given. Ask El Shaddai to highlight people and places you can be praying for throughout the holidays that the way could be prepared for Him to search and know them.
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