Every Step We Take

sleepMy folks aren’t Christians and in God’s absence, Santa Claus sometimes stood in.  Worn down by eleven months of sibling squabbles, come December my parents invoked the Bearded Enforcer.  ‘If you’re not good’ they said, ‘Santa won’t come’.  Sleeping or awake, we were reminded, ‘Santa sees’. Well, I didn’t want him Seeing: especially as he held the keys to Barbie’s Dream Castle.

I can’t confirm the beard, but Scripture reminds us that God too sees us wherever we are.  For years I’ve taken this as a threat – but in fact,  it’s a promise.

I was struck by this as I leafed through Psalm 56 this morning. It’s written to the tune of ‘A Silent Dove in Distant Lands’.  I don’t know it either; but the point I think, is this: doves are normally fairly chirpy fellows who stay close to home.  This one is silent; and a long way from where he comes from. Driven from his homeland and rejected by even his enemies (1 Sam 21.10–15), the writer, David, knows what it is to suffer. And in this psalm, he pours out his heart to the Lord.

One verse in particular caught me:

You keep track of all my sorrows.
You have collected all my tears in your bottle.
You have recorded each one in your book. (v8)

Whether it’s trivial, (a sad film) or something that matters, (losing someone we love), our tears fall easily and they’re too cheap to count. But the Lord sees our grief.  Every tear we shed matters to Him; and He cares for and comforts us, long after we forget.

God sees us: but not in a CCTV, I’ve caught you  sense.  In the way a parent tiptoes into their sleeping child’s room and watches over them. That’s how loving He is.  And that’s how precious we are.

Here’s an incredible testimony to the Lord’s care; even in the furnace: Life Without Lizzie




6 thoughts on “Every Step We Take

  1. Thank you for this, and for the link to the Life Without Lizzie blog too. I want to write something more profound, to reflect what I felt as I read them both, but I can’t. Words have dried up as the tears have flowed. So, thank you for reminding us of the God who watches over us for our good even in the darkest of pits and strongest of furnaces.

  2. Emma, thanks so much for this reminder, especially for those days (yesterday) when it seems God has left the building. I love that image of Him watching us like a parent watches a sleeping child.

  3. Hi Emma, father Christmas was big in our house while our girls were young. But when friends asked them “Have you been good girls for Santa?” I challenged the said adult with “Farther Christmas, comes to our house regardless of how bad or good they’ve been!’ I got some strange looks and one teenager (from quite a legalistic upbringing told me ‘you will have the worst behaved kids ever!”
    My girls knew that if they miss behaved in December, the punishment would be no different to misbehaving in January. What I wanted them to learn from Father Christmas was the ‘grace of unconditional love!’

    I supported a teenager who’s step-farther carried through the threat of no Farther Christmas, and the whole family opened their presents in front of the poor lad as he sat there with nothing. No wonder he slashed every tier of every car in their street.

    My girls by the way have turned out lovely and I’m so proud of them.

  4. Hi Andy: I love the idea of an unconditional Santa. That story about the boy you supported is heartbreaking.

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