I do not want to see you now and make only a passing visit; I hope to spend some time with you, if the Lord permits.
1 Corinthians 16:7 NIV
Munch. Munch. Crumble. Munch. Munch. Crumble. This is how I begin most mornings. I breakfast on a granola bar and a glass of water almost every day. And usually I eat it over the sink. Munch. Munch. Crumble. The granola bar is crunchy and makes a mess. I don’t take the time to sit as I should and savor it’s honey oat sweetness. I don’t linger over bites and enjoy them as Faith eats her cereal.
I eat it standing over the sink, so as not to get crumbs on the floor. I’m standing for a fast get-away. I can eat and run. Munch. Munch. Crumble. Dash! That way I can get on to my list. You know the one I simply must get done without delay. The beds. The laundry. The bathrooms. The emails. The phone calls. The shower.
It occurred to me sometime during a munch and a crumble that I am sometimes like that with God. I shove in an obligatory devotion so that I can check Him off of my list. Spend time with God? Check! Except I really didn’t spend time with Him. I only rested my thoughts on Him for a fleeting moment. I only had a quick munch with Him, and I’m off to the next thing.
God calls us to a relationship with Him. He longs for it. To have that relationship, we must spend time with Him. We need to spend time in His word – actually sit and savor the Bible a little bit. We need to spend time in prayer – not the “Good bread, good meat, good God, let’s eat” prayer. I mean serious conversation with our Father. We need to spend time in praise – glorifying His matchless name. We need to have a meal with God, not a munch, munch, crumble.
As I have changed the way I meet with God, God has changed me. It’s just that simple. Join me this week as I sit down and savor God. Instead of a munch, munch, crumble, let’s make it a munch, munch, humble.
I love Sunday School! And so do my kids. Each Sunday when we go to pick them up, they have stories to tell and Bible verses to share. ”Do you know about the lady with the crooked back?” was the first thing out of Faith’s mouth this past Sunday. ”Jesus made her straight.”
I smiled knowing my little girl was being steeped in the Word of God. This Sunday Faith planted a seed. I believe it was a lima bean. She had a little cup decorated with all sorts of stickers and her name. ”I put three in there,” she told me excitedly, “You have to put it in the window.” We came home and selected just the right spot for three little seeds to grow.
After Faith’s Sunday nap, she came bounding down the stairs. She ran to the seeds and on her tippy toes took the cup down from its “growing spot.” With expectant eyes, she peered over the top of the cup. ”Why is there not a plant?” she asked.
“Well,” I explained, “We have to water it and give it time to grow. These things take time.” It didn’t matter what I said. Each day she has believed that any period of her absence from these plants might have made them grow. She checks them all day long.
I chuckle as I watch her but know I am the same way. There are people in my life in which I plant the seeds of Christ. Each time I see or hear from them, I am peering anxiously into their cup to see if there is any growth. Often times, I am discouraged and impatient when I can’t see a thing.
Yesterday, Faith went to spend the night at my parent’s house. In her absence, I watered her little seed and went to place it back in the “growing spot.” But as I placed it back, I saw something through the side of the clear cup. Way down under the soil, the little white lima bean seed had sprouted, and although there was no visible sign of the growth above the soil, there was growth beneath the surface.
And it gave me hope.
The seeds that I have planted may be growing under the surface. I was reminded of the words of Paul:
I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God made it grow. 1 Corinthians 3:6 NIV
So, until I see the sprouts, friends, I will continue to peer expectantly over the side, patiently waiting.
When I think of baby dolls and stuffed animals, I think of girls. When thoughts of nurturing and caring come to mind, I think of mothers. But I’ve overlooked someone important, the father.
Colin has been begging to go to Build-a-Bear for quite some time. He built himself a turtle and Faith a cat four years ago, when Faith was born. He hasn’t been back. So Monday, I took him to Build-a-Bear. He chose a sweet little puppy and immediately named him Scott. He marveled at choosing just the right soft heart to kiss and place inside. He fluffed and brushed his dog in the grooming area. I let him pick a shirt in which to dress his new puppy. He choose a black t-shirt with the planets on the front.
Since Monday, Colin has cuddled, loved, kissed, and slept with little Scott. The first night when it was time for bed, I overheard Colin asking Faith if he could use her pretend washing machine. He took Scott’s tiny tee off and “washed” it in her washer. After the cycle was complete, he put the shirt back on and brought Scott to me. ”I’m pretending these are his pajamas, too, Mommy. I just washed them, so Scott is all clean and ready for bed.” Someday, my little man is going to make an excellent father.
When nurturing comes to mind, we think of mothers. We hear about mother earth and mother nature, but friends, it really didn’t start with the mother. It started with the Father. Our Heavenly Father. He cares about us and nurtures us. He cares about the tiny details of our lives. He hurts with us, strokes our feelings, and gives us encouragement.
This is an excerpt from an email that I recently received. It’s a letter from our Father.
I know everything about you…Psalm 139:1
I know when you sit down and when you rise up…Psalm 139:2
I am familiar with all of your ways…Psalm 139:3
Even the very hairs on your head are numbered…Matthew 10:29-31
For you were made in my image…Genesis 1:27
In me you live and move and have your being…Acts 17:28
For you are my offspring…Acts 17:28
I chose you when I planned creation…Ephesians 1:11-12
I knew you even before you were conceived…Jeremiah 1:4-5
I determined the exact time of your birth and where you would live…Acts 17:26
You are fearfully and wonderfully made…Psalm 139:14
I knit you together in your mother’s womb…Psalm 139:13
And brought you forth on the day you were born…Psalm 71:6
You were not a mistake, for all your days are written in my book… Psalm 139:15-16
I have been misrepresented by those who don’t know me…John 8:41-44
I am not distant and angry, but am the complete expression of love…1 John 4:16
And it is my desire to lavish my love on you…1 John 3:1
Simply because you are my child and I am your father…Matthew 7:11
For I am the perfect father…Matthew 5:48
Every good gift that you receive comes from my hand…James 1:17
For I am your provider and I meet all your needs…Matthew 6:31-33
My plan for your future has always been filled with hope…Jeremiah 29:11
Because I love you with an everlasting love…Jeremiah 31:3
My thoughts toward you are countless as the sand on the seashore. Ps. 139:17-18
And I rejoice over you with singing…Zephaniah 3:17
I will never stop doing good to you…Jeremiah 32:40
For you are my treasured possession…Exodus 19:5
I desire to establish you with all my heart and all my soul…Jeremiah 32:41
And I want to show you great and marvelous things…Jeremiah 33:3
If you seek me with all your heart, you will find me…Deuteronomy 4:29
Delight in me and I will give you the desires of your heart…Psalm 37:4
For it is I who gave you those desires…Philippians 2:13
I am able to do more for you than you could possibly imagine…Ephesians 3:20
For I am your greatest encourager…2 Thessalonians 2:16-17
I am also the Father who comforts you in all your troubles…2Corinthians 1:3-4
When you are brokenhearted, I am close to you…Psalm 34:18
As a shepherd carries a lamb, I have carried you close to my heart…Isaiah 40:11
One day I will wipe away every tear from your eyes…Revelation 21:3-4
And I’ll take away all the pain you have suffered on this earth…Revelation 21:3-4
I am your Father, and I love you even as I love my son, Jesus…John 17:23
For in Jesus, my love for you is revealed…John 17:26
He is the exact representation of my being…Hebrews 1:3
He came to demonstrate that I am for you, not against you…Romans 8:31
And to tell you that I am not counting your sins…2 Corinthians 5:18-19
Jesus died so that you and I could be reconciled…2 Corinthians 5:18-19
His death was the ultimate expression of my love for you… 1 John 4:10
I gave up everything I loved that I might gain your love…Romans 8:31-32
If you receive the gift of my son Jesus, you receive me…1 John 2:23
And nothing will ever separate you from my love again…Romans 8:38-39
I have always been Father, and will always be Father…Ephesians 3:14-15
Come home and I’ll throw the biggest party heaven has ever seen…Luke 15:7
Love, Your Abba, Almighty God
Isn’t He amazing?