English poet Francis Thompson lived a short, painful life. After attending college to study medicine, Francis figured he’d try his hand at writing poetry and essays rather than follow his training as a doctor. But Francis soon learned that the writing life is a tough business. Forced to live as a vagrant with few options to provide for his needs, Francis settled on selling newspapers and matches while working on his craft.
For years success evaded him. Facing starvation and self-destructive addictions, a benevolent couple discovered his writing. Delighted by what they read, they agreed to publish his first book of poetry in 1893. That work paved the way for some modest success late in life before Francis succumbed to tuberculosis at age 48 in 1907.
His best known work of poetry, The Hound of Heaven, describes God’s relentless pursuit of us in spite of our tendency to run from His love. I was reminded of that poem as I read the following letter sent to us from Jerry Menci, a new listener to our radio broadcast:
“I’m a truck driver, and I’ve always been kind of a rebel. One day, I was driving down the road, and my radio kept kicking back to this one station that was airing your Focus on the Family broadcast with Dr. Dobson. No matter how many times I tried changing the station, it kept kicking back to Dr. Dobson, so I finally decided to just listen for awhile. I want you to know that listening to your program that day started me on the road toward God.”
Jerry’s note is such a clear reminder that God pursues us with a passion. Why? He cares deeply about you and me–so much so that He sent us His Son. God longs for us to find our peace with Him through faith in Jesus. Whether you’re a truck driver in Kansas or a homemaker in Vermont, He’ll do whatever it takes to get our attention–including supernaturally intervening with the radio dial.
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