My job is analytical, as are others in the office. If we’re pouring over things, and somebody starts talking, it’s not uncommon to miss the gist. We look up: “Did you say something?” I also used to observe this with my kids: In frustration, I would tell them to work on their “ambient attention.”
Our Sunday class reminded us, however, that this isn’t a problem for God. His attention is always on certain ones: The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous And His ears are open to their cry. // A broken and a contrite heart, O God, You will not despise. (By the way, God’s attention isn’t preoccupied with everybody: The face of the Lord is against evildoers…)
I’ve observed that very few people have decent ambient attention. Before I ever launch into one of my pithy platitudes, I’ve discovered I must first knock-knock, actively bring them out of what they’re doing, and then practice interactive verbiage as a test. This takes more time than the actual announcement! I just love the fact that God doesn’t require that rigmarole. The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous…
And He hears me. He’s not distant, distracted, or disingenuous: The Lord is near to the brokenhearted… Nobody else really loves me like that. Nobody.
People are walking, watching, or clicking—here, there, and everywhere. I regularly run the above rigmarole. Frankly, I can be in a room full of people and be completely alone.
But it’s such an encouragement to know I’m not alone, and I matter enough to God that he’s ready to hear me—365 days, 24/7: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”