The goodness of God endureth continually. – Psalm 52:1
The little farm was nestled in a valley in the hills of Southern Oregon. The road from the winding mountain highway to
the house extended across a creek by way of a rickety old wooden bridge. On the other side, the road split north to where my wife’s family lived or
south to some not-so-friendly neighbors. These neighbors felt they had exclusive rights to the road across the bridge, even though both households
legally shared that access. The owner even placed a no trespassing sign along the road. The sight of my wife’s family driving across the old bridge
would bring both the man and his wife out to the front porch, where they would proceed to scream threats and claims of trespassing. They wanted no
one touching what they mistakenly assumed was exclusively theirs.
One day, while the old man was working about his place, he lifted the lid off his well and, as he peered down into the deep dark hole, his glasses slipped
off his face and fell into the depths of the well with a distant splash. Without glasses, his vision was very poor. Try as he might to reach them,
it became very evident that he needed help beyond himself. The only person close by was my father-in-law next door—the very person he had done
his best to keep away. Standing there, realizing his need, the old man turned and made his way up the road to the house of the one who could help.
He was not turned away.
The situation caused me to consider, do we ever try to keep God out of certain areas of our lives, only to call on Him later when we really need Him? Sometimes
we might think we have exclusive rights to a particular part of ourselves, and that no one should be getting involved there but us. However, if we
restrict God’s access to our lives, that is essentially like saying to Him, “Stay out until I need You.”
Our heavenly Father is a “very present help in trouble” (Psalm 46:1) and He wants us to call on Him when we have a need. But He also longs to be more than
that; He wants to be our closest Friend in everyday situations. The journey through life was designed to include a relationship with God, and that
can only take place when we offer Him an “open road” to our hearts without restrictions. When we do that, we will find that He not only helps us in
times of trouble, but that “the goodness of God endureth continually.”