Sunday, August 13, 2023

The Runaway Bunny

By Al Behel
    Where can I go from your Spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence? (Psalm 139:7)
    Sometimes teens decide to run away from home. They want freedom.
They want to be out from under the control of their parents. They may travel all the way across the country to get as far away as possible. Parents are frantic. They wait by the phone. They pray for their safety. They plead for their return.
    Margaret Wise Brown has written many children’s books. Each has a simple story. One of her books is entitled, “The Runaway Bunny.” It is about a little bunny that tells his mother that he has decided to run away from home. “If you run away, I will run after you. You are my little bunny.” She tells him that if he becomes a fish she will become a fisherman and fish for him. If he becomes a little boy, she will become a human mother and hold him in her arms. She convinces him that no matter where he goes she will go after him. Finally he says, “Shucks! I might as well stay where I am and be your little bunny.”
    That’s really what David was saying about us. No matter where we go, God is there. He never leaves us or deserts us. We can’t travel beyond His reach. “If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there Your hand shall lead me, and Your right hand shall hold me.”
    God’s love can’t let us go from His heart. No matter how far we wander away from His presence, His eye is always on us and He longs for our return. Like the father in the parable of the Prodigal Son, God is always watching and waiting for us to come over the hill. As Paul said, “Nothing in all creation can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus...” (Romans 8:39). His inseparable love is always there.
    It doesn’t matter how far you have gone from God’s presence, He is still there. His hand will always be outstretched, waiting and longing for your return. He will not force you to come back. You must want to return to Him, but He will not stop loving you. That’s why He came down, took on our nature, human flesh, and walked the rocky roads He had made, while being rejected and abused by the very persons He came to rescue from the powers of death and hell. That’s why He endured the cross. Because He loves you so.
And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love.
Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.” (1 John 4: 16).

- Al Behel served the Great Smoky Mountains Church of Christ in Pigeon Forge, TN, for many years prior to this death in April 2022. The congregation may be contacted through their website -

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