One of the defining moments of my life as a grandmother came when my grandchild was two years old. The family had been visiting us for Christmas, a week when A. and I spent every waking moment together -- going for walks, talking, eating together, and grandma just watching, watching, watching every precious thing she did.
The morning they were leaving, A. and I sat on the bottom step together as her parents loaded suitcases in the car and rushed around making sure that nothing had been left behind. Somehow, even at the age of two, she must have realized that they were leaving me behind, and as we sat there without a word being spoken between us, she leaned into my side as if to embrace me. At that moment, I recognized the intimate and very special bond between grandparent and grandchild. For the first time in my life, I myself was not responsible for getting things done -- for getting to the airport on time, for making sure that life's tasks were completed responsibly, for any accomplishment. For the first time in my life, I had the luxury to just sit and love.
That morning, we both leaned into one another's hearts. She felt my sadness; I felt hers -- even though she was only two, there was a true communion of hearts. As she has grown older, that bond continues, despite the physical distance between us. We "lean into" one another with no words spoken. When she was nine, we took a walk together, and she said, "You know why I like talking to you? You listen!" I listen because there is nothing more important to me; there is nothing I have to be doing at the moment. Listening is what I am there for---and nothing else demands my immediate attention.
Now that I am fortunate enough to be retired, I am experiencing the same relationship with God. There is nothing I have to be doing at the moment; I am free to lean into the heart of God and to listen to Him. No words are spoken; no words need to be spoken. I can sit on the front porch with my book un-read, dishes un-washed, garden un-weeded and lean into the heart of my God, who leans lovingly into my heart also.
Once I said to my grandchild, "I'm a terrible grandmother. I don't write and I don't call." Her response: "But I know you're there!" That about sums up the relationship. We are both "there" when it comes to each other -- and nothing else is between us, interfering with that bond. When Scripture says, "Be still, and know that I am God," does it not mean the same relationship? When we are still, when there is nothing more important that must be done, we can lean into the heart of the Most High God and know that He is "there."