“I just want to hold you.”

I’ve been absent from writing for the past couple of weeks due to the birth of my second son, Nathan Christopher. He’s doing great (mainly because he has a fantastic mother)! Our first son, Will has been good with Nathan. Will is three and half so he’s definitely had to adjust. He’s used to being the center of attention in our household. That changed for him the last two weeks.

Since Jean has been more hands on taking care of Nathan, Will has wanted and needed attention from me that usually came from his mom. Just this afternoon after waking from his nap, Will said to me, “I just want to hold you.” Now, at that moment I was trying to catch up on some devotional that I missed due to the needs of a newborn. Will’s request was a timely reminder of what devotional time really should be. My son just wanted to be with me. He just wanted my presence.

God used the simple clarity and wisdom from my son to teach me an indispensable lesson—devotional time is frankly about being with the Lord. As I’ve pondered God’s lesson to me for today, I’m amazed and disheartened at my own spiritual narcissism. Much of “my” devotional time is spent praying for what I think I need or want and done with little clear focus on the One I’m suppose to be with. God help me to just want to be with Him—to be in His presence.

Don’t misunderstand this as overblown mysticism. Time with and in the Lord’s presence requires the framework of Scripture (which is the way in which God speaks to us today). But far too often, even in reading Scripture, I read it as if it were just another book rather than God’s Words to His people—rather than God’s Words to me. Allow me echo this lesson to you as well. Before your head hits the pillow tonight, pause…

Ask the Lord for some time in His presence.

Ask Him to speak to you through His Word.

I’m quite certain that just as I picked up my son this afternoon when he asked me, God will grant you the privilege of His presence if you’ll just ask.

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