A friend recently shared this story with me:
One night, a young boy called out to his father from his bedroom, “Daddy, come in here. I’m afraid.”
The father had just settled into bed for the night after a hard day’s work. He was exhausted and didn’t feel like dragging himself into his son’s room, so the father called back, “Son, you don’t have to be afraid. God loves you and God will take care of you.”
There was a moment’s silence and then the young boy called out once more to his father, “Daddy, I know God loves me and I know God will take care of me, but right now I need somebody with skin on.”
Have you ever felt the way this young boy did? In distress when even your deep faith in God wasn’t enough. A time when you just needed someone with skin on? Who was that someone and how did he or she bring you comfort? Or perhaps you have been the skin on for others in distress. What did you do for them?
Having skin on is a way for us to partner with God in doing God’s work. Having others with skin on show up in our lives is a way for us to experience God’s deep love for us. Having skin on is about connecting with, uplifting, blessing and being available. It is about being generous, sharing gifts and reaching out. Experiencing those who enter our lives with skin on is about being open, aware, accepting and grateful.
Just yesterday, I had four people show up in my life with skin on and make what began as a dreary day into a delightful day. My next-door neighbor called and announced she had bought corn for me when she was up at her cabin and was coming over to drop it off. Another neighbor walked out her door at the same time as I did for my afternoon walk and joined me. And at the end of the day, two of my grandsons face-timed me to entertain me with jokes and riddles and say “good night.” It doesn’t get better than that.