Hand Chewing, Hair Plucking and Toy Squeaking
by Janice Price
Each year it becomes harder to kneel down for any reason, so I do it as infrequently as possible. But sometimes I really want to kneel while I’m praying and so I kneel beside my bed for some private time with God.
I didn’t say alone time with God. That is impossible around here.
As soon as I kneel down, my big puppy, Buddy, will come lumbering into the room and climb onto the bed to chew on my hand for attention. The he will climb down and return with a squeaky toy, which he will proceed to squeak right next to my ear.
One of the cats will walk back and forth brushing against my face. Cyndi will purr in my ear and pluck hairs from my head. Each vies for the position closest to me.
No, it isn’t possible to be alone around here, but as annoying as it can be at times, it’s nice to know I’m surrounded by love. The animals enjoy my company and want to be near me as much as possible. I enjoy their company too.
Humans are just as competitive. I don’t know of anyone who resorts to hand chewing, hair plucking or toy squeaking, but we do compete to be the center of attention all the time. We want to be the best friend, the most popular student or the favorite child, the best writer or the award-winning whatever.
God does not compete for attention. He doesn’t have an inferiority complex. He knows who he is and that there is none who can surpass him in any category – except in sin. God is incapable of sin. But he is the most powerful, has all wisdom and knowledge, judges with truth and mercy, sits on the highest throne, and commands respect as the creator and sustainer of life.
If we love God we will want to be near him. The amazing thing is that we can spend as much time as we want to with him. He doesn’t take sick days or long vacations and he doesn’t disconnect his answering machine for self-time. He is faithful and always available.
We can pray and read the Bible, attend church and various religious socials or classes and become complacent in these times with him. But if we truly love him, we will want to be near him as much as possible and to spend quality time with him.
Christianity is not to be a part of our lives, neatly compartmentalized and separated from home, career, family and social engagements. Christianity is a way of life, a 24/7/365 deal. It isn’t always easy either. There will be sins, repentance, necessary correction and even pruning to deal with. Christians are not always popular and persecutions can arise.
We can learn from our young children and our pets. They don’t just vocalize their affection; they show it. They seek and enjoy our company. They want to be near us and have our undivided attention.
Are we committed to obeying God’s commands to love him above all else and to love others as we love ourselves? Are we spending quality time with him or merely reading a lot of books about him? Do we give him our undivided attention or do we want him to lavish his undivided attention on us?
It is one thing to say, “God, I love you,” but we should also show it by the way we live our lives. We should make God the center of our lives, train our thoughts on him and keep the lines of communication open.
I am thankful our time together does not always need to be formal or spent on my knees. I can pray anywhere I happen to be at any hour or the day or night. I can also grab a favorite beverage – a cup of hot coffee or tea, hot chocolate, iced tea, water, or any beverage of choice - and curl up in a favorite chair to visit with him, even at three a.m. on a lonely night.
If you are experiencing a lonely night, and your hand chewing, hair plucking, toy squeaking children and pets are sleeping, grab a cup of tea, curl up in your favorite chair, and spend some private time with God.
© 2005 Janice Price