I picked my three favorite photos. One has his tiny little fingers wrapped around her thumb; it looks as if he is really clinching it. His precious little face takes up the majority of the second picture. The third is the two most precious faces I know by earthly sight pressed together in sorrow and love. I had them printed 11×14 in sepia tone. Then I placed them in three simple little white frames which I hung at the top of the stairway around noon. I knew she would be home around 3pm. I hear the garage door. We talk about the day in the dining room, she ascends the stairs. “Why are the stairway lights on?” she thinks to herself…oblivious. I wait. As she descends she notices, by her reaction I know I have done well. I love making her happy. Some things can leave us, and we never notice them. A huge wrought iron piece that previously occupied that space in the hallway was not missed. If the picture were removed I think Bethany would instantly notice. If you treasure something, really treasure something, you will quickly realize its absence. Bethany so treasures Elijah; his absence hurts.
The return of the Lord to Zion (v. 8) was occasioned by singing. God’s presence among them was their deepest joy. Could God be absent and our souls comfortable? Are they? Or do we like the Psalmist “seek His presence continually” (Psalm 105:4), pant after him as the deer pants for water (Psalm 42:1), and desire above all to “dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to inquire in his temple” (Psalm 27:4)?