running away

Running for the door

I had a baby in one arm, with diaper bag, purse, and shopping bags hanging off the other arm (how many arms does a mother have anyway?) and a toddler who was mad. He was mad because I was buying his sister shoes and he wasn’t getting any. Being the smart toddler he was, he waited until I was paying the saleswoman to make his move. Then he took off out of the store, running full bore to who knows where.

I grabbed my change, the baby, and all the other stuff and took off after him. Thankfully we were in a mall, so he wasn’t running out into the street. But he was running and was just beyond my reach.

Folks stopped and stared. They smiled or laughed, as if commiserating with me. But no one stopped to help. And he was getting closer and closer to the front door with every two-year old step.

Finally, I caught a woman’s eye and said, “Stop that kid!” and she did. Whew! We were literally within sight of the door. After catching my breath and readjusting my load, all without letting go of the runner, we set off for the car. And yes, he was screaming the whole way out, “Let me go! You’re hurting me!” You can probably imagine what happened after that.

Running Away

A dear friend’s son ran away this week. He was in some trouble and didn’t want to face the consequences. He disappeared with just the clothes he was wearing and without his phone. For days there was no word.

Worry deepened the lines on his parents’ faces with each passing hour. They talked to everyone they knew. Then they looked in every place the could imagine. And they called for help on social media. I believe they would have crawled across the desert to find their boy.

No One Left Behind

A few weeks ago, I wrote about running like a prodigal, a reminder that no matter what we may have done, our God is waiting for us to return to Him. Today the testimony is that God will run after us too. 

Just like I ran after a wayward toddler and my friends searched desperately for a lost teen, our Father will exert every ounce of his inexhaustible energy to find us and draw us back to himself. So on the days we feel like running away, rather than toward him, God will come after us.

The Psalmist reminds us,

Where can I go from your Spirit?
    Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
    and if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
    if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
    your right hand will hold me fast.

Psalm 139:7-10

There is no place we can go that He isn’t there or that He can’t find us. Maybe we should just stop running.






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Holly Barrett

Refuge and strength
Like the spring rains that water the earth