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By Jill Novak

After a year-long internship, my son Eric came home to visit before planning to seek work in another state. I found myself wanting to spend as much time with him as possible because time was so short. I wanted every moment to count, and I didn’t want to forget them, so I kept a journal of the things we did together as a family.

One morning, when I came out on the front porch, Eric was already sitting there writing a letter to a friend. My husband was there also, enjoying the morning, and he and I began to talk.

It wasn’t long before Eric made some witty comment about his “chatty parents,” and I promised to be quiet. It was enough just to be in his presence.

His presence – suddenly tears came to my eyes. I thought of the Lord. Do I realize I’m always in his presence? He is always present but am I? It’s one thing to be in someone’s presence, and quite another to be fully present.

We’ve all experienced when the person we’re talking to is distracted. Their gaze may wander, they may look down at their watch, or they may text and try to listen at the same time. They are not fully engaged in the conversation. But this isn’t true of the Lord. He is always completely available – ever present. I am the one who is usually distracted. I have to work at quieting my heart to experience the fullness of His presence.

Basking in my son’s presence and savoring every moment together made me realize that basking isn’t a chore, it’s a delight – especially when you love someone.

To know the Lord is always present makes all the difference in the world. And in His presence, there is fullness of joy.