Growing up in San Juan Capistrano, which is more or less a beach town, my dad and I fished all the time. Whether on a boat, in a lake, or from a pier, we were constantly putting our poles in the water to see what we could catch. Of course, the flip side of that was that we ate a lot of fish. While this would be a dream come true for some people, I’ve never been a huge fan of seafood, and that dislike forged one of my favorite childhood memories. One day, when I was 12 or 13 years old, my dad and I were out on the boat and it was about 2:00 in the afternoon. We left early in the morning, but somehow, we forgot to bring food. We thought for sure there were snacks in the cabin, but when we realized there weren’t, my dad decided that we should pray. As we bowed our heads and asked the Lord to provide us with something to eat, I was certain His answer would come in the form of a fish. However, much to my delight, it didn’t. As crazy as it sounds, about half an hour later, my dad looked through his binoculars and saw a strange-looking object floating in the water. When we moved toward it, we put our net down and discovered that it was one of those huge Costco-sized tubs of beef jerky (Slim Jims to be specific). As we trolled along, we scooped up about seven of those containers, and the two of us munched on them for the rest of the afternoon. Though it’s a miracle in and of itself, I enjoy sharing this story because it reminds me that God loves us in very personal ways. Though fish would have sustained me, my Heavenly Father cared enough about my desires to give me the kind of food that any teenage boy would relish. That day, it was as if He smiled on me with His favor, and I’ve never forgotten it.
My friend, your Savior’s love for you is personal. He doesn’t blanket all of humanity with a one-size-fits-all affection; rather, He knows your desires, and He delights in meeting them in a way that proves just how deeply He cares about the one and only you. Since Jesus understands the longings of your heart, He dispatches answers to your prayers that demonstrate how close, concerned, and compassionate He is. He is the Good Shepherd, you are His precious lamb, and He is ready to reveal the power of His favor whenever you call on His Name.