Tim Throckmorton: Keeping a low profile

Published 12:00 am Saturday, August 5, 2023

Oxford languages defines “low profile” as “a position of avoiding or not attracting much attention or publicity.” 

Now I’m confident that you have never had just such an experience. If so however you are well aware of what I am about to describe. 

A few years ago, I was in a very nice hotel for a meeting and after ducking into the restroom I walked to the sink to wash my hands and as usual I put my hands under the water faucet expecting the vigorous flow of H20… I wait, and I wait, and I wait… and here’s where that “low profile” moment arrives. 

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After a period of time, which included ample opportunity for others to observe the scene, I happen to look down to see the problem. 

You see, there was this handle thingy on the faucet that you are required to move in one direction or another to make the afore mentioned water come out of the faucet! 

What happened next is that moment as you look cautiously from side to side to see if there were witnesses to the episode. It doesn’t take long for a person to find themselves dependent on something does it?

 It doesn’t take long after the lights go out in our home for us to realize just how much we depend on electricity. If the water is off for more than a day, we are in big trouble! 

The absolute worst-case scenario I suppose for the majority of the population today would be the unthinkable possibility of losing one’s smart phone! 

I came across a collection of cartoon images recently that depicted our utter dependence on our cell phones. They were very entertaining and yet terribly convicting — like the one with the wife and husband at a table for a meal, he engrossed by his electronic devise and her looking sternly in his direction… she says, “Do you mind if I strap your phone to my forehead so I can pretend you are looking at me when we talk?” 

And then there were the toddlers with pacifiers in their mouths sitting on the floor. One baby looks at the other with the image of a panicked adult in the background going frantically through his pockets… “It must be an adult binky; they get really freaked out when they can’t find it!”

 I believe that those are small potatoes compared with our dependence on things other than God. Consider that fact that, in His word, He has invited us time and time again to rely on him… The Old Testament directs us… “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” And this reminder, “I have called upon thee, for thou wilt hear me, O God: incline thine ear unto me, and hear my speech.” Jesus words reach through the ages to us today… “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” 

 The Apostle Paul reminds us that God awaits our reaching out to Him as he shares with us the invitation… “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.” It’s a potential problem for sure when we find ourselves so dependent on the luxuries of the day that we forget how to turn on a water faucet, that’s bad, I know! But to move through life without trusting in and calling upon the God who created us and for that matter invites us to draw near… well that’s tragic to say the least! The good news is that God is ready and waiting whenever we are truly willing to reach out to him… As the Prophet Jeremiah wrote… “And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.”

 Many years ago, in a textile mill in this country there was a prominently placed sign for all the sewing machine operators to clearly see, “When your thread becomes tangled, call the foreman.” A young woman was new on the job. Her thread became tangled, and she thought, “I’ll just straighten this out myself.” She tried, but the situation only worsened. Finally, she called the foreman. “I did the best I could,” she said. “No, you didn’t. To do the best, you should have called me.”

 Allow me to suggest that we live in a world today where God the creator of all mankind has lovingly placed before His creation sign after sign and invitation after invitation to come to Him, to find Him easily and to know Him personally. 

May we never find our hearts so conditioned to handle life ourselves that we neglect an open invitation to know the one who made it all possible!  I’ll feel silly again I am quite sure… perhaps even today. I do pray that I will never feel silly, embarrassed, or even regret as I come to that moment when I stand before my creator!

Tim Throckmorton is the national director of Family Resource Council’s Community Impact Teams.