Caller Blocked

My daughters and I talk on the phone at least once a day.  I love talking with them.  We talk about fun things with the kids, hard things, simple things as well as deep things in our hearts.  We laugh, cry, or just enjoy each others company. It’s important to us to stay connected. Several days ago I didn’t hear from my oldest daughter, Melissa, for a day or two.  I called her the next day and we had a great conversation.  The next evening she called me on my husband’s phone and remarked how impossible it had been for her to reach me during the last few days.  She had left messages and even sent texts…. No response. Meanwhile,  I had received none.  I couldn’t understand, as I was receiving plenty of calls from others….just not from her.  She tried again immediately after our conversation to no avail.  My phone showed no acknowledgement of her call. I contacted my cell phone carrier customer service department and inquired as to the problem.  As the representative walked me through “smart phone for dummies” issues I went to my phone’s contact card for my daughter.  The problem was clear.  Somewhere along the way I must have accidentally touched the phone at this setting and inadvertently checked “block caller”. I was so grateful for the representative who showed me how to fix this problem. I called Melissa and we had a good laugh about the experience.  I’m freely receiving communication from her once again.

This experience caused me to think about the value of free flowing communication.  It felt terrible and  so sad to think that her communication to me was blocked.  I thought about and reread several scriptures — one in the Old Testament, one in the Gospels, and one in the letters.  These are poignant scriptures, and ones I can’t forget.  Amidst God’s compassion and tenderness I mustn’t forget his Holiness.  These scriptures help give me the right kind of “fear of God” combined with his love and tenderness.  They also renew my conviction of the deep need for my whole-hearted participation in our God given “ministry or reconciliation.” (2 Cor. 5:18-19)

Isaiah 59:1-2
Surely the arm of the Lord is not too short to save,
        nor his ear too dull to hear.
    [2] But your iniquities have separated
        you from your God;
    your sins have hidden his face from you,
        so that he will not hear.

Mark 15:34
And at the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?”–which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

Ephes. 4:17-18
So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. [18] They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts.

Sin has consequences.  Un-repented of and unforgiven sins block our “calls” to God.  This truth hit my heart deeply with the painful thought of what it would be like to have my daughter’s calls blocked for real, on purpose. I realize, through other scriptures how deeply eager and ready God  is to “unblock” those calls for us.  The cost of the cross shouts this desire as loudly as possible.  The separation grieves him.  But God’s holiness, and the cost he paid for our sin demands it.    The access to “unblocked calls” is up to us.  He provided the means for free flowing access and is always eager to keep the lines open.  I’m so grateful he does that for me.  May I (and we) keep the calls “unblocked” by our pursuit of holiness and may I (and we) be the “representatives” that help others find the key to unblocking the calls.

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About Jeanie Shaw

After retiring from forty-five years in full-time ministry, Jeanie Shaw went back to school to earn her master’s and doctorate in spiritual formation and discipleship. She also serves as a certified Christian life coach who loves helping people discover the joy, peace, and purpose that come from finding and following God’s plan for their lives. She has taught classes and workshops all over the world and has written numerous books. She has four grown children, eight grandchildren, and a golden retriever who thinks he is human. When she is not reading, writing, coaching, teaching, or enjoying her family she might be found walking along rivers, learning new lessons about life.

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