One Saturday morning my wife, my children and I hurried up the stairs after a quick shopping trip, each with a bag or two of groceries. I had the coveted Life cereal box, which I guarded closely, lest one of my family members wrest it from my grasp. We put away the groceries, set the table—one bowl and spoon each—then laid the cereal box down, back side up. The question upon all our minds was, who would find Waldo? He was a geeky guy with a beanie and horizontally striped shirt, hidden in a mosaic of people, birds, cats, dogs, buildings, fountains, vehicles, and more people. We loved the challenge of being the one to spot Waldo.
Life is like that. Every day a multitude of events, both mental and physical vie for our attention. There is a bill to be paid, a doctor appointment, a ministry meeting, a funny noise coming out of the transmission, the phone ringing, a paper due, my favorite television show, a crying baby, email to read, email to send, email to erase (inbox 2,937), trash to put out, pain in my back, an itch on my head, a blog to write, a friend to call, prayer, but wait, the phone is ringing again and my favorite show is coming on and I want something to eat because all these distractions are driving me absolutely CRAZY. Where is Jesus?
What keeps us from pursuing Jesus? Is it the fear that I might miss out on a meaningful relationship or a great business deal, or a pleasurable pursuit? Is it the fear that I won’t be able to pay my bills or pass my course or make it to the library in time to get a free video? When I get distracted by the possibilities that parade themselves across the stage of my imagination, Jesus is hard to find. Oh, He is somewhere in the throng, hidden from view, but once you find Him there is no mistaking Him for any other. If you cling to Christ all other pursuits will seem insipid, bland and colorless.
With Jesus the sun is brighter and fears are smaller. With Jesus relationships are richer and hearts are more hopeful. When Jesus is near I can whisper a thousand prayers a day and rejoice by faith in His sovereign management. “The Lord will perfect that which concerns me.” Psalm 138. One of these days the things of Earth will not only grow dim, but will vanish forever. You will not care that you missed a season of House or Heroes. One of these days, much sooner than we realize, there will be absolutely NOTHING LEFT. Nothing left but Jesus. We will see Him then face to face. We will have a conversation with our Lover, Who must first be our Judge.
Jesus, be my judge now, not then! Jesus be my love now, not only then! Jesus infuse my imagination with Your beauty and love, enrich every experience with Your perspective and cause my eyes to look out into the world with Your compassion and zest, being content that my needs are already met because I possess You. If I am in this way content then I have no other need than to walk in the light of Your presence and participate joyously, youthfully and wholeheartedly in whatever path You lead.