All through the summer, the neighbors' house was there. Even though I couldn't catch so much as a glimpse of it out my back windows, I knew it remained. Our trees were full and lush, shielding the house from view; but I knew that once autumn winds blew and tossed leaves about, I would see it again.
It's not that I'm particularly attached to that house. Oh, I do enjoy the look of its gray roof against a winter sky, and I find the sight of smoke billowing from its chimney downright neighborly. But what caught my attention in a moment of prayer was the realization that, whether I see it or not, the building remains. The presence of the house is an objective fact.
Whether or not I "see" Him, God remains. Things may come along and block my view, but that makes no difference. God's presence is an objective fact. Nothing that obscures my view of Him changes that. Always, no matter what, He is there.
Sometimes things wedge themselves between me and God. Often I plant these things myself. But always God is there, and unlike the house at the back of my house, He is actively waiting.
He waits for me to turn to Him, push aside whatever blocks our union, and come to Him anew.
'In all our thoughts and actions we ought to remember the presence of God, and to count as lost any time in which we do not think of Him.' (St. Bernard of Clairvaux)
Painting: Vitus Staudacher Sommertag im blühenden Bauerngarten; in US public domain due to age
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