"He never sleeps. He never slumbers." --Psalm 121:4
There exists within Wendy's parents' beautiful Craftsman-style home -- the home in which we are currently guests -- a single hallway that stretches the length of the home, ending in one of the home's two bathrooms. And for a child at night in search of a drink, this journey can seem interminable, fraught with danger, dancing shadows and creaking floorboards beneath each fearful step. Especially for my daughters, who seem to have inherited their mother's imagination.
Last night, as I sat typing at my keyboard, the last of my clan to turn in, I heard some footsteps navigating the hall. But something was different -- the steps lacked their usual, tentative pace. I rose to meet my youngest, Ella, as she walked in to grab her drink. Hair messed, she sat the cup down on the sink and turned to make the long trek back to bed.
"Are you okay, baby?" I asked her, turning to walk her back to her room.
"Yes, daddy," came the hushed reply.
Just then, as my eyes adjusted to the darkness of the hall, I caught a glimpse of her older sister Mya standing against the wall.
"Mya, you too?" I asked, fearful that I'd be proctoring these hallway pilgrimages the whole night through.
"Ella woke me up and asked me to come with her."
That's why Ella's steps were sure. Because her big sister was standing guard. It was the perfect vantage point for this sisterly sentinel -- right there amid the onerous wooden floors and creeping shadows, a gesture of assurance that removed Ella's fear of the journey. Mya waited until Ella had passed her on the way back to bed before abandoning her post, and the two returned to the safety of their sheets together.
We all have halls to walk. And in the dark, our imaginations can easily get the best of us. The noise of our footfalls against the silence can make us doubt whether the journey is worth the danger. But there's water at the end of this walk and Who you ask along with you matters.
For Discussion: You know, the woman at the well went looking for water, too. Jesus, knowing her fears -- and her thirst -- gave her living water. She would never have to walk in fear again because He was with her. No matter your hallway, because of the One who walks with you, you can stride with certainty. As we wind down the week, what halls do you have to walk? Deadlines? Doctor's appointments? Does it comfort you to know Who is beside you along the way?
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