“I keep the Lord always before me. With Him at my right hand, I shall never be shaken.” Psalm 16:8
Are you aware of God’s constant presence with you? If He was sitting next to you, whispering to you, would you hear Him? If He stood behind you and gently pulled a strand of hair to get you attention, would you notice it?
Over the summer, I bought my girls each a tree frog. When it was feeding time, I went to feed them live crickets. In doing so, I removed the top lid from the terrarium and placed it on the ledge the terrarium was seated on. I had only noticed one frog when I began to place the crickets inside. I just figured the other frog was under the moss. When I went to put the lid back on, as I picked it up I noticed something had fallen off the lid. I quickly realized it was a frog. I screamed and jumped backwards, dropping the lid. Yesterday, I was met with a similar fear of a small reptile. As I was eating breakfast with my kiddos, my daughter began to get my attention and was pointing down at the table within one foot of my plate. When I realized that she was pointing at a lizard, I jumped and screamed creating quite a bit of excitement and adventure in catching the lizard.
You may say, what does the presence of God have to do with tree frogs, lizards and a screaming woman? Actually it has an interesting perspective and parallelism. You see, in either case – the instance with the tree frog and with the lizard – I did not see the small creature right away. I was not expecting either to be within my personal space and when I did notice I was very startled.
It can be the same way with God. When we are not attentive to our relationship with God, we may not recognize His presence or His call to something He is wanting us to do or say. When we finally realize God is there, we may become startled, especially if He is calling us to something and we are headed the other direction. On the other side of the coin, we may not have a relationship with God and are shaken by many things in our lives, especially in moments of struggles.
The very essence of it is that God is always with you and it is your attentiveness to your friendship with Him that is the key to all things in your life. God has paved the road in front of you. He has constructed the scenery along the path and He is directing you. It is your awareness of Him along your journey that creates the peace in the adventures of the joy filled moments and the painful moments. Being aware that God is on the journey with you carrying your baggage when they are too heavy and running carefree along the countryside when there are none to carry prepares you so that you won’t be surprised, but filled with peace and excitement.
Although He is always near, God does not force Himself into any of our lives but if we nurture a relationship with Him and know He is “at [our] right hand, [we] shall never be shaken.” Even in the biggest trials along our journey, we will not be overcome.
Are you nurturing your friendship with God, tuning in your awareness to His presence? Will you notice when God taps you on the shoulder or whispers to your conscience? Are you prepared for the unexpected or will you be startled?
When the unexpected comes to visit, fear may stop in to visit as well but it can turn into peace knowing that God is present guiding you in all things.