Not long ago, I was the keynote speaker at a big fundraising dinner. There were hundreds of people spread throughout the expansive hall. In order to hear and see the speakers, there were large screens in each corner and alongside the back wall. This made it much easier and more pleasurable for the guests. I, however, was not a guest. I was the speaker.

When I stood at the podium and began to speak, I tried—like always—to make eye contact with those in front of me. The problem, however, was that there was not a single person looking at me. For a few minutes I couldn’t understand if they found me boring or were too tired, until I realized that while they appeared to stare off into space, they were actually looking right at me, indirectly.

There was not a single person looking at meWorse yet, I had to do everything in my power to avoid glancing at myself while I spoke. For starters, I really didn’t want to see myself on that big a screen. Undoubtedly, every insecurity would rise to the occasion, and I would lose my concentration trying to fix something on my face. More so, if I looked at myself, everyone would know I was looking at myself, and that would really be embarrassing.

So instead, I had to speak to an entire audience that was watching me quite closely (more closely than anyone should ever have to see someone), and yet no one was actually looking at me, which made connecting to my crowd quite difficult. And let’s not forget that the whole back of the room had their backs to me while they watched me on their screen.

It got me thinking. This scenario, in so many ways, resembled my relationship at times with my Creator. Throughout my life I have had those precious few moments where I have needed to connect, needed to speak, and was able to make that eye contact. I was able to look out, and know I was being looked at and listened to. But more often than not, I am there, standing at that podium, screaming, crying, arguing, debating, begging . . . and He seems to be looking away from me. Even worse, at times it appears His back is turned.

But in truth? He is seeing me, He is watching me, closer than I can even imagine. And while I either don’t want to see or can’t really see my true self, up close and personal on that big screen, He most definitely can.

He is seeing me, He is watching me, closer than I can even imagineFor my keynote address, I quickly learned that I couldn’t count on eye contact to get me through. So I did what I had to. I faked it! I pretended to be speaking to someone, and laughed along with the crowd after a joke, even though no one was directly laughing with me. And you know what? Not only did they not notice that they weren’t looking directly at me, I stopped noticing it too. Because the truth was, they were watching me. They were listening and they were learning. And that mattered a lot more than if they were actually staring into my eyes.

It can be hard to remember, and even harder to feel, but we are never alone and are always being watched. The question is not if He is looking. The question really should be: when blown up on that big screen, will we like what He sees?