King John Henry III
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King John Henry III surveyed his kingly domain with pride. In it were castles, roads, horses, soldiers and dragons and...well, it had everything a kingdom should have.
King John Henry III was lord of all he surveyed, the architect of its carefully ordered design. He was so caught up in ordering his troops to another location he barely heard the voice calling. It was of little consequence to him. He was busy with more important things. But as he began to circle his mounted knights around a low hill, the voice came again. This time he recognized the voice and the name it called. "John...John!"
But King John Henry III had more pressing concerns at that moment. Enemy soldiers were about to attack the castle, and he frantically called on his troops to repulse the threat. In the midst of the turmoil, the voice came again. "John Henry!" This time the tone was stronger, clearer and more intense. But King John Henry III was in the heat of battle. He couldn't answer the call...not just yet.
And then the voice came again...and this time there was no denying its summons. "John Henry the Third—COME THIS MINUTE!" It was a voice even a king had to obey.
King John Henry III reluctantly stood up, took one last look at his 6-foot-square kingdom in the sandbox, and raced toward the house. For every 4-year-old knows...when your mother calls in that certain way, you must answer it like the voice of God.
I'm not so sure I'm very different from little "King John." How about you?
In our "to-do list" world, we expend blood, sweat and tears building sandbox kingdoms where expedient trumps important. And while we do that, the Ruler of the universe stands at the door and knocks.
When the great prophet Elijah, in fear of his life from a wicked queen, ran 40 days into the wilderness, God bypassed the drama of earthquake, wind and fire, and instead confronted him with a still small Voice that said simply, "What doest thou here, Elijah?"
The Voice comes to us too. Whether it comes as a whisper in the silence, or an unmistakable call in the cacophony of life, it's meant to help, to heal, to inspire us to tread where we otherwise would not go.
The next time you hear that Voice or a persistent knock, pick yourself up, brush yourself off, and throw open the door, where He stands ... waiting.
"We expend blood, sweat and tears building sandbox kingdoms ... the Ruler of the universe stands at the door and knocks."