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By Eileen Timothy

One Sunday morning, as the Lord waited expectantly for His children to gather together with Him, He noticed a number of them were missing.  His disappointment grew as He thought of the special blessings He has so lovingly prepared for them that day. “What could it be that means so much more to them than ! ?” He wondered.  He decided to visit the home of each one that was absent and find out for Himself.

When He entered the first home, a deep silence greeted Him. As he walked through the house, He discovered everyone still in their beds sleeping.  He thought back to a time in Gethsemane when He had asked some of His disciples to watch and pray, but they too fell asleep. “It saddens me now as it saddened me then,” He thought sorrowfully. And He went on.

As He approached the next home, the sound of the TV drifted through the open window. Inside, the children were being entertained by cartoons, while the baby played on the floor beside them.  Listening to the parents’  conversation, He grieved at their decision to “just skip church that morning.”  “It’s such a hassle to get the children ready,” they remarked.  He thought of how He entrusted these precious children to them, to bring them up in the house of the Lord. His words echoed from many years ago, on an occasion when His disciples tried to hinder the children from coming to Him. “Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not; for of such is the Kingdom of Heaven,” He had said to them.  His heart ached as He left.

His next unseen visit found the family busily getting ready for company.  Dad was getting the barbecue grille ready.  The children were putting up the volleyball net, and Mother was rushing around the kitchen making last minute preparations.  His thoughts went back in time to a visit with Mary and Martha.  Martha had been so busy preparing for their guests, that she had no time to spend with Him.  A tear rolled down His face as He went on.

On His last visit, He silently wept as He listened to critical comments about His children. “Mr. Brown is such a hypocrite,” one said.  “Mrs. Jones said something last week that hurt my feelings,“ said the other.  They went through a mental list of their brothers and sisters in the Lord, assigning a fault to each one.  “My dear children,” the Lord pleaded silently, “Judge not that you be not judged, and forgive that you may be forgiven.”

His tear-stained face reflected the inner sorrow He felt as He left the last home. Pondering each visit He had made that day, He, once again, experienced pain as He did so many years ago for us on the cross.  Again, He cried out, “Why have you forsaken me?”  This time, not to His Father, but to His children.

We are His priority.   Is He ours?

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