Last week we had the opportunity to spend a day at Disneyworld with our son, daughter-in-law, and grandsons Wynden and Brae. It was a near-perfect day, and we stored up countless memories of our time together. Seeing our grandsons meet Mickey Mouse (who actually talked!) was a particularly special moment for us as we saw how this Disney character interacted so preciously with each boy.

When we got home and reflected on the day, we talked about our favorite ride at the Theme Park. When it came to my turn, I announced my favorite was “The People Mover.”  This ride is located in Tomorrowland and isn’t an exciting thrill ride, roller coaster, or animatronics-enhanced experience. It is simply an easy-going shuttle on a rail where you can view different areas of the park from an elevated platform. What made this ride special was that I rode it with my grandson Wyn. The park was illuminated as the night brought colors to life, and Wyn excitedly told me about things he could see and held my hand as we had a bird’s eye view of everything. I loved being with this precious boy, and said to myself, “it doesn’t get any better than this.”

It occurs to me that this is how God views our time with Him. Just as I cherished the moments I had with my grandson, I’m convinced that God loves the time we spend simply being with Him. One woman put it this way: “I just love crawling up in my big God’s lap and being with Him.”

I would add, He does too!

Sometimes the word ‘prayer’ is interpreted to mean a formal, religious exercise through which we tell God what we need and walk away. Even as it’s good to pour out our concerns and requests to God, this is only one aspect of prayer. God’s real desire is for us to experience him, not just as the omnipotent One who spoke everything into existence and lives above the cosmos in absolute perfection and glory. He wants us to know Him as the personal One who created us and delights in us. Here is how one Bible author put it:

“The Lord your God is with you,
    the Mighty Warrior who saves.
He will take great delight in you;
    in his love he will no longer rebuke you,
    but will rejoice over you with singing.”
Zephaniah 3:17

The point here is that God delights in you so much that He breaks into joyful song at the thought of you! He longs to spend time with you, even as I loved being with my family.

Long ago a man named Brother Lawrence once wrote a book called “Practicing the Presence of God” It’s a good book to read, and will encourage you to experience the joy and fullness of God’s presence.
Every moment of each day can become an adventure in experiencing the life-giving presence of God in and through us.

So whether you are in the clouds of a storm or the calm of a peaceful day, as you go on the people-mover of life today, don’t forget to hold God’s hand.

He longs to spend time with you!

God bless you,

Chris Atkins