Story of the Day for Saturday October 22, 2011
The Focus of His Affection
Even the hairs of your head are all numbered.
Ted Williams was one of the greatest hitters in the history of baseball. He won six league batting titles and, in a career spanning a couple decades, averaged – averaged! — .344 at the plate.
Williams was meticulous about every aspect of hitting. He would visit lumberyards so he could choose wood with narrow growth rings for his bats. He would weigh his bats on a postal scale in the clubhouse to make sure the humidity had not increased their weight, and was known to bathe them in alcohol to keep them cool.
If a bat didn’t meet his specifications, he would return it. Williams demanded his bats be 33 ounces. An official from the Louisville Slugger company couldn’t believe that Williams could sense such minor differences in weight, so the company official set six bats in front of him, and challenged him to identify the bat that weighed a half an ounce more than the others. He did.
He once set a shipment of bats back to the factory because the handles were too thick. He was right: they measured the grips and they were five thousandths of an inch too large.
When we care deeply about something, we pay attention to the smallest details. We’re tuned in to things that others might ignore.
Dr. Robert C. Murray, Jr. related an incident in Reader’s Digest. Late one night, he was summoned to the hospital to attend to one of his patients. He tried to quietly slip out of the house, but tripped over a toy in the dark and loudly crashed to the floor. As he lay there, rubbing his sore leg, his wife slept soundly.
Then, their infant made a faint cough in the nursery. His wife immediately leaped out of bed, rushing past her husband as he lay on the floor.
As she returned from the baby’s room she looked at her husband and said, “What on earth are you doing on the floor?”
One of the ways that Jesus assures you how deeply he cares about you is by noticing the details. When he tells you he knows the number of hairs on your head, he’s saying that’s how closely he’s focused on you. You are the object of his attention.
David wrote a psalm, inviting God to know the details of his life. “Search me, O God, and know my heart. Test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any harmful tendency in me, and lead me in the everlasting way.”
If our standing with God is based on our behavior, our desperate desire is that God would not know us; that we could, somehow, hide from him. But once we understand that we are the focus of his affection, everything changes. He even knows the hairs on our head, but will not turn away his face.
(copyright by climbinghigher.org and by Marty Kaarre)