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For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him. — 2 Chron. 16:9
Last week we saw the picture of a father lifting his child up with joy and adoration:
the Lord make his face shine on you
and be gracious to you; — Num. 6:25
In the rich Hebrew language, “the LORD make his face shine on you” paints a picture of a father lifting his child up in his arms, above his face, and his eyes beaming with the love, joy and adoration of any proud parent. But … what about my wayward, often defiant, and stiff-necked self? At times my behavior is far from any idea of a beloved child.
Yet, just like the father in the Parable of the Prodigal Son, your Father’s eyes are always ranging throughout the earth to strengthen you:
So he (the prodigal son) got up and went to his father.
“But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him.” — Luke 15:20
The father’s eyes were ranging daily, watching for his defiant, rude and selfish son. When his son arrived with his prepared apology speech, his dad would have none of that – no groveling from his son!
“But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. ²³Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate. 24For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.” — Luke 15:22-24
Are You Looking at Me, Dad?
When I was around ten or so, a Dracula movie came to town. I wanted to go see it with my friends, but my dad warned me it would be scary, and no good could come of it. I went anyway, against his wishes. He was right. It scared me to death! That night I just knew Dracula was hiding in the closet, or under the bed.
There was no chance of me sleeping in that kind of obvious, impending danger. So I woke my father up out of a deep sleep and said, “Please Dad, will you please come sleep in my room with me!” As the loving father he was, he got out of bed and came into my room. He got in the other twin bed and started to go to sleep, assuring me everything would be all right.
But Dad was in the other bed. Dracula could still sneak in and get me! So I woke Dad up again, and asked, “Dad, are you facing me? Please turn your face towards me so you can see me.”
I needed my father’s eyes on me – to comfort me and to protect me. So do you. And you can rest in the assurance your Heavenly Father’s eyes are always on you:
If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. 9If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, 10even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. — Psalm 139:8-10
May you learn to seek out your Father in prayer, knowing his eyes are always on you, and that he will jump off the porch to run to you, his beloved child, to throw his arms around you and kiss you as you approach him.