Samuel on his bed beside the lamp,
its flame describing in slow pulses
the flickering hope
of a lonely, quiet yearning;
the hollow stillness
like a silent pond where
a searching voice could be heard
like a dropping pebble.
And in the dark and in the emptiness
the One who is doing the calling,
the One whose heart is searching,
is the unheard God.
Nathanael on the ground
under the fig tree, looking
up through its leaves at
an empty sky.
The leaves sift the sunlight,
its harshness is filtered,
but the shade over his soul
shows little gleam of joy.
His heart nearly closed
in its quest for truth,
his horizons have dimmed,
no corners of hope discerned.
But there is One who
remains watching and looking,
and the One who is searching for him
is the unrecognized God.
You and me on our beds,
our couches, you and me by our lamps.
You and me under spreading trees,
or peering at the sky through windows;
you and me at our office desks,
fingering the plastic of keyboards;
you and me in our living-rooms,
or sitting at our kitchen tables;
you and me, so yearning for hope,
so longing for meaning, truth, or joy –
may we become aware of the One
who is searching for us;
awake to the One
who knows and calls our names
longing for us to listen:
the God of promise and of invitation.