(Pictures taken on the hike we took for my birthday, Dripping Springs.)
Rushing through the mall on the way to the parking lot, I noticed a small boy, about 4-years-old. He held a gigantic tube filled with red, blue, yellow and green bubblegum balls. He looked worried and his voice sounded scared when he said, “Mommy? Mommy, where are you?”
I leaned down. “If you can’t find your mommy, I know someone who can help.” I took the lead and headed for a near-by cashier. “They will call your mother over the intercom. Whenever you get lost you can ask one of the people who work in the store to help you.”
The man behind the counter turned toward us. “This man works here,” I explained, “you see the tag he wears around his neck.”
The child nodded.
I explained, “This little boy is lost. Will you please call his mother?”
The child peeked at the clerk from behind the Bubblegum tube.
“What’s your name?” the man asked.
I leaned in, trying to hear the whisper. The boy seemed unsure and shy as he mumbled.
“Peter?” I asked.
That’s when I heard a strange sound, like a whistle or bird call.
The boy’s eyes lit up. “I heard my dad!”
The sound came again and the boy turned. I saw a large man step out from the racks of clothes that were near-by. “Come here, you Rascal,” he said to the boy. And the child ran happily to his father.
Jesus said that His sheep know His voice and won’t follow a stranger. Of all the voices, mine and the store clerk, the one that brought comfort and joy to that child was the voice he knew, his daddy’s voice. Whenever we feel confused, or lost, we only need to tune our hearts to listen for the voice of our Shepherd, our Abba Father to know that all He is near by and there is no need to fear.