When I arrived home after work one evening, one of my daughters, who was perhaps three or four years old at the time, met me at the door with delightful words.
“Daddy! I have something to show you! Take my hand, and close your eyes, and no peeking!”
So I took her hand and (mostly) closed my eyes and let her lead me through the house to show me the surprise she had prepared for me.
All these years later, I don’t remember what the surprise was. I’m sure it was one of those things that, in truth, is a bigger deal in the eyes of the child than in the eyes of the parent. I do recall keeping one eye slightly slitted open, because I was pretty sure that she wasn’t thinking about doorframes, and I didn’t want to get knocked out.
Now, why did she want me to close my eyes? Because even at her young age, she knew that joy is heightened by surprise, and surprise is intensified by anticipation. And why did I go along with her? Because I know and love her; because I trusted her to lead me to something good; and because I wanted her to enjoy seeing my joy when the surprise was unveiled.
Sometimes God meets us at the door, so to speak, and he asks us to take his hand, and close our eyes, and “No peeking!”
Most of us respond to that by drawing back and saying, “What? Where are you taking me? Is this gonna hurt?”
Don’t we know him? Don’t we trust him? Do we think he’s going to run us into a doorframe?
How hurtful do you suppose that is to him?
Why do we insist on seeing where he’s taking us?
He doesn’t hide the future from us to frighten us, or to disguise some evil and hurtful thing he has planned for us. He hides the future from us because he loves us—because he wants us to know the increased joy of anticipation and, eventually, revelation of the great things he has prepared for us, in both this life and the life to come.
And we should go along with him, not complaining and not asking accusatory questions, because we know him, because we trust him, and because we want him to enjoy seeing our joy when the surprise is unveiled.
When my daughter said, “OK, Daddy, open your eyes!” I looked first at the surprise—but then I looked immediately at her face, because I wanted to see her joy at my joy. That’s a priceless experience, to see unrestrained joy in the face of someone you love.
Instead of worrying about where God may be taking us—and deeply hurting him in the process—we should prepare to see his face and the joy that we have placed there by simply taking his hand, closing our eyes, and not peeking.