Truly Present by Bob Wickizer

Truly Present
Bob Wickizer
Isaiah 1:1,10-20; Psalm 50:1-8,23-24; Hebrews 11:1-3,8-16; Luke 12:32-40
8/8/04


One lifelong regret I have in juggling the demands of business and family was not always being there for my children. Many years I traveled over 200 days a year and more than once I would be home working late and still was not there for my daughters. One evening as the glow of a computer monitor enveloped my face, I became aware of another person's presence very near me. My daughter tugged on my sleeve and said she was going to bed. I turned away from the computer momentarily, gave her a hug and a perfunctory kiss goodnight. Then I turned back to the absorbing world of computer software.

It seemed like minutes passed. I'll never know how much longer she stood there but I emerged again from the fog of my engineering trance and realized she was still standing there next to me, wanting to be noticed. I acted startled that she had not yet gone to bed. She looked at me with dismay and said, "You weren't in the hug Daddy." I asked for clarification. "What do you mean honey?" "You hugged me but you weren't really there." Ouch. Although I recall the pain of that encounter, I am sure my daughter remembers the pain even more.

Isn't life a lot like that? We find ourselves so busy with things we think are important that we fail to be truly present for the really meaningful events. How many times have we kissed a spouse or a loved one when we were not really "IN" the kiss? How many times have we listened to a child when we weren't really listening? How many times have we put our money in the offering plate at church and we failed to really say "Thank you God" with joy in our hearts? How many times have we said the Lord's Prayer on autopilot?

Outward displays of love, affection, thanksgiving or devotion are absolutely meaningless if our soul is not "IN" the action. In fact when we are not truly "IN" the action whether it is an interpers ...


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