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“Daddy, come here! Please, come here!”

I was doing laps at the pool when the little boy shouted. He was bobbing up and down one lane over. He was secure with this floaties, but wanted his daddy close by. I heard him as I took each breath.

“Daddy… come…”

Breathe.

“… dy.. come here!”

I flipped at the end and pushed back the other way. I could see his dad swimming underneath the water, coming quickly to his son. 

I swam down a lap, flipped, and swam back.

I paused there, long enough to hear the conversation between father and son.

“Why didn’t you come when I called?” The son asked, hurt and a little angry.

“I did come,” his dad said, “I came as soon as you called. You just couldn’t see me.”

I dunked back under the water and swam. I thought of all the things I’d been processing that day. Worry about school, the pandemic, racism. Worry for my adult kids, my littles, my grand babies and this broken world we all live in. I called out to my God in that, but still felt a little overwhelmed by the hopelessness that seems to be everywhere.

The father’s voice played in my head. I did come. I came as soon as you called. You just couldn’t see me.

This flood of peace came over me. I can’t protect my kids, big or little. I can’t protect my grand babies. I can’t protect them from every evil that’s out there. But God hears my voice. He is here. He is doing battle even when I can’t see him. 

He is near.

And I am grateful.

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