“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jer. 29:13, NIV)
“Mama, find me!” my little brown-haired boy exclaims as he runs through the house. I hear the muted pat-pat-pat of his socked feet against the hardwood floors. Our house isn’t very big, so I take my time walking from room to room. I teasingly call out, “Is he in here? No. In here? No.” Giggles spill out from behind the clothes in my closet. “Gotcha!”
Now, the house is eerily quiet. I should hear sounds of Batman knocking over bad guys or cars shooting down the racing ramp. The silence earns my full attention. I look in all the usual places when I notice the back door is ajar.
A feeling of panic starts small in the pit of my stomach. A tiny flash of horrible possibilities sparks into a flame of worry. Instead of the teasing meander of our hide-and-seek game, I am in a mad dash out the door. My eyes scan the yard; the latch to the gate is slightly out of place. As I make my way around the house, I see my tiny son standing in the big, wide world.
He’s at the edge of our driveway talking to a stranger who’s out for her daily neighborhood stroll. Panic turns to relief (with a little embarrassment) as I rush down the slope of our driveway to collect my Houdini child. No teasing “gotcha” for this man-child. He gets a gentle but firm scolding to never, ever, ever go outside without me.
A household game of hide-and-seek is casual with low stakes. A missing three-year-old who is braver than he is wise is dangerous. Mama’s search for her son is very different in these two scenarios.
Continue reading “Seek and Find” on Breath on Paper.