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I started out for a walk this morning, camera and iPod in hand, but the little clouds of gnats everywhere eventually convinced me to head back to the house and try again later.  Instead, I sat on my parent’s porch in my new favorite spot, watching the busy flurry of birds at dad’s feeders and listening to their many different calls, along with the far-off mooing of a cow.

“I’m trying, God,” I prayed, “I’m trying to just be still and be with you.”  My thoughts started wandering to the things we did yesterday, my girls, the future, the things we’re planning to do today and so on.  I was frustrated with myself.  “I’m trying to just be still, God.  I’m here.”  It almost felt like he said, “What are you expecting to happen?”

“Well, I would love for you to help me stop thinking and just be.  I would love for you to tell me things.  I would love to feel your presence, feel closer to you.  I want to know you better, Papa, be closer to you.”   The quiet sound of the morning crickets and the busy birds continued.  Then I looked past the birds and saw the mountains behind, far off across the valley.  They are bluish-purple this morning with a crown of fluffy clouds resting on top, the sun lighting up patches here and there among cloud shadows.

A song came to mind, the words taken from Psalm 121.

“I lift my eyes to the hills, and I wonder, ‘from where comes my help?’
My help, it comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth.
He will not let you stumble, He will not let you fall,
The Lord is your keeper.
The sun will not smite you by day, nor the moon at night,
The Lord will guard your life.”

Maybe sometimes it’s not the receiving of an amazing message from God that draws us close, maybe sometimes it’s just sitting there available.  Maybe it’s just remembering that He is my Maker, He is my Keeper, and enjoying the peace of that thought and truth.  He is with me, whether I hear his voice in my heart at this moment or not, whether I feel the emotional warmth of his nearness or not.  He is near.

I pictured Jesus sitting next to me and longed for Him to actually be there so I could lean against Him.

“I’m trying, God.  I want to be near You.  I want to hear Your voice.”