My oldest child, Charlotte, has begun asking why she can’t see God. She knows that he’s all around us, but wonders why she can’t see him. And for some reason, telling her that all she needs to do is open her eyes is taken a bit too literal by a five-year old.
To her credit, pausing long enough in the moment – any moment – to look for God is something I’ve only recently begun to work on. From this practice, and beginning this project, it’s become clear to me that God continually appears in the least assuming ways and places to serve us.
He could make a grand entrance, splitting the earth open and descending from heaven for all to see. Or taking our free will from us, ensuring all believe in Him. But He didn’t, and didn’t.
Instead, God the father sends his only son to us via a young, unwed mother. His step-father is a tradesman, and certainly not part of the religious elite or ruling political class.
In the Gospel, Jesus came to us in the most humbling manner. And He continued this theme of humility throughout His entire time here on earth – frequently expressed through service to others.
The glimpses I’ve had of Him are usually in reflective hindsight. He brought my wife to me in a Mexican restaurant at a time in my life when I was far from Him. Without her, I wouldn’t be writing this as I wouldn’t have found my way back to Him.
I see Him in those that live with extra challenges, yet embrace life with such fervor. Selfishly, I feel as though they are sent specifically to teach me.
Thus, if we feel distant from Him, and question why we can’t see Him, it’s because we aren’t looking. For He is with us always, and frequently most visible in the least assuming (humble) ways.
Case in point, He’s using Charlotte – a five-year old – to tell me to slow down, to pause, and open my eyes to see (as well as to open my ears to hear) Him.