Sleep was shattered by a wave of sound spilling over my eyelids and crashing into my ears. Voices, hushes and hollers pooled with weeping and whispers. Behind it all was a steady drone. I blinked and bolted up, wrapping a robe around my bed-warmed body and stumbling into the hallway.
The sound was louder there, pulsing out from the farthest door. Hinges chattered and the handle shook. Without a thought I grasped the bronze bulb, turned and pushed.
Inside was not at all as I remembered. Gone were the familiar furniture pieces, family portraits and shag carpet. Instead a strange vision filled my sight.
Bare walls met gleaming floors that spread across an endless room. In front of me was the side of a tall metallic box from which the sound must have been coming. My assumption, since a blanket of silence had fallen the moment I entered. Curiousity drew me. Once inside, the enormity of the metal box was dumb-founding, stretching far beyond my memory of the room. Across the front shone millions of star-like lights in all colours - some fiercely glowing, some blinking, some fizzling and going dark as I stared.
Peering closely, I could make out something affixed above each minuscule light. Different letters paraded across tiny labels. It was all enough to boggle the brain and I closed my gaping mouth, head shaking to clear the confusion. A presence nudged me with warmth.
“My child, do you know what this is?”
Terror and joy melted together in my throat. In all of my years as His child, I had never physically heard the indescribable voice of my Lord.
“Can you tell me what it is?” He repeated gently.
I shook my head.
“Listen, dear one. The kingdom of heaven is like this machine. Each person created has a unique and direct connection to the Father. He knows their voice and He monitors and attends to each connection. Never will any word, spoken or unspoken, go ignored or unanswered. All are heard by the Father.”
“Prayer.” The word slipped like a breath through my lips. Jesus nodded and smiled gently.
“Yes, child. All can pray and in His power the Father can hear and distinguish each syllable. It is a great gift and a source of boundless blessings.”
I shivered with the remembrance of the voices, screams and tears. “What of the steady drone? It’s almost white noise, nearly drowning all others.”
“The Father would hear even one voice amidst everything.” He turned away then, shoulders sagging slightly. “And that noise is anything but white, dearest.”
“Can you distinguish the different voices, the various tones and languages of those talking to the Father? If you could, you would even hear on some frequencies a soft melody, which is the sound of a saint listening for the Father’s words. Each hears the music as the Father intends. The drone, the white noise as you call it, is something else entirely.”
“As each person has an open line of communication to the Father, each also has the choice of whether to tune in. That noise is the sound of those who have turned off the connection, refused it, or ignored it. Some have even abused and distorted it into that noise.”
My heart twisted at the thought. “Does God not shut them off, to turn down the clamor?”
Jesus looked into my eyes again. “The Father will never turn one off. That sound is one that calls the angel armies to war, fighting for that soul. The Father does not give up on a single one.”
”What are the lights?” I stammered, squinting in search of familiar words of the labels.
“A visual on the status of the connection. Flickering lights are hours away from the droning. Flashing lights are the irregulars, the Sunday prayers, the graces before family dinners. Steady lights are the warriors, listening and speaking to the Father unceasingly.” Jesus stepped towards the machine and pointed a graceful finger. “There is yours my child.”
I didn’t want to look away from Him, didn’t want to face that light and the truth it told. Jesus’ eyes met mine again.
It didn’t flicker, but wasn’t steady. An erratic, but noticeable flash burned itself into my brain. “Irregulars,” He had called them. The lines were constantly open, yet the flash indicated neglect. My own shoulders dropped in shame.
“The Father has graciously given, my child. Will you succumb to the white noise? Will you forfeit the blessings?”
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