He said to them, “it is not for you to know the the times or seasons which the Father has fixed by his authority. But you shall receive power when the Holy Sprit has come upon you…Acts 1:7-8
Every now and again my efforts to be prepared, organized and thorough fall apart like a sand castle in a rain storm! When that happens, I can be positive it’s God serving me a slice of humble pie and waiting with a lesson. I was trying to be all fancy and impressive last week and I had this magnificent new recipe all whipped up in the crock pot ready to go when I left the house to do a hundred things. During one of my errands I chatted with a frazzled mom who was in a rush to get home, get dinner, get one child to swim lessons and another to dance and the third to grandma’s to finish a 4-H project for the fair and then pick up her house before anyone saw the disaster. I thought to myself, poor thing, I’m so glad my dinner is bubbling away in the crock pot and my house is tidy. Now, I certainly didn’t say that and I have certainly been in that mammas shoes more times than I can even count, but in that moment, I was feeling prouder than I should have!
A couple of hours later I pulled in the garage feeling all accomplished and took some groceries into the house and was surprised that I wasn’t greeted by the delicious smells coming from my fancy dinner in the crock pot. Upon closer inspection, I realized the knob was on the low setting as directed, so I of course began to fuss about the darn broken crock pot. As I spit and sputtered, I came to the humbling realization that I had never plugged the stupid thing in! Wow…so much for being on top of everything! The leftovers I served that night were much less impressive and I suddenly felt deflated. Oh, and did I mention my clean floor was now a mess of dirt and broken glass as because I set a plant on the window to get some extra sun and the wind blew it off sending it crashing onto the hard wood floor shattering the pot and scattering the mess clear across the dining room floor. As I began sweeping up the mess the sound of the beeping microwave heating the leftovers reminded me to look for the lesson!
My first attempt at finding the lesson was a little sassy on my part. I actually said, “Well fine, I guess I’m not supposed to be organized and think ahead, you’re trying to tell me I’m supposed to fly by the seat of my pants is that it?” I stomped around the kitchen serving up day old spaghetti and sweeping up dirt while pouting. I’m sure you can imagine how productive that was. Before I went to sleep that nigh I remember thinking with a softer heart, ok God, I’m done pouting please show me the lesson because I’m positive I’ve missed it completely!
The next morning I got word that a friend who had been waiting for weeks to hear about a new job got a call and was hired with a huge bonus and great benefits. I heard about a family who has been waiting for months and months to adopt were suddenly on a plane to California to meet their soon to be born son and that a gentleman who had been suffering from a mystery sickness finally got a diagnosis and the treatment was simple and completely effective and he was feeling miraculously better in just a couple of treatments. After responding to all three of those fabulous messages I sat down to pray in thanksgiving for their good news and came across this verse from Acts. I once again was flabbergasted with the Fathers perfect timing and humorously direct response!
The lesson was a big one; I can be as prepared and organized and fancy as I want but only he knows the details and the timing. I have no power and when I try to think I do and I spend too much time being all puffed up about my “skills” I fail to let him have control and I get caught up in my own efforts and think they matter. He was poking me right in my pride and then he swooped in the next day with not one, but three amazing examples of his perfect timing. I can be as ready and prepared as I want, but I’m not in charge and sometimes I just have to wait. I don’t always get things my way and don’t have all the answers. The lady waiting on the job, nearly took a different one with less pay and no benefits because she was discouraged with the wait. The couple waiting for an adoption thinking God had abandoned them is now at home with their perfect son and the man who suffered for months wound up with a much less serious affliction that is treatable with a simple and inexpensive procedure. There was great blessing on their waiting…I think God was trying to remind me that is always the case! And one more detail to the story, in his great humor, a friend saw that fabulous new recipe I had put in my stupid crock pot on my counter, and she told me not to bother with it because she made it and it was awful! He’s so funny!
A Seed To Plant: What are you waiting for? Take that list to the Father in prayer and give him permission to take his time and then pray for the grace of patience!
Blessings on your day!
…behold, I am making all things new…Isaiah 21:5
As the calendar ticks away to the end of July, teachers everywhere are beginning to scurry. The back to school mind is beginning to plan and organize and prepare. I suppose most of the non-teacher world, sees summer for us as a multi week vacation. That would be partly true, but not completely. For me, and most of the other teachers I know, it’s a time to reflect and re-work the parts of our curriculum that didn’t quite reach the students the way we’d hoped. It’s a time to read and prepare for changes and fresh ideas, all targeted at engaging students and helping them grow. It’s also a time to catch up on projects. Today was the day I tackled my last big project for the summer; painting and redecorating the bathroom.
When I got started this morning, I was optimistic because the bathroom is the smallest room in the house so I thought I could have it wrapped up by afternoon. Well, one thing led to another and by the time I re-painted the vanity and spray painted the towel holders and light fixtures and then got to the walls, it was dinnertime. I had such high hopes for a quick and uneventful project. Well, the walls are painted, but the drawers are all out of the vanity and the ladder is still in the bathtub. The room looks like an F2 tornado passed through and there are little bits of toilet paper stuck to the floor where i bumped over my paint pan and when I stood up to wipe things up, I knocked down the toilet paper roll and it of course, rolled right through the paint splatters. I finally just turned off the light and called it a day. Instead of feeling relieved and satisfied with a job well done, I realize I get to rise and shine in the morning and give it another go! I’ll have to hold off on my shiny new bathroom until tomorrow.
As I was standing in the kitchen cooking supper I had to snicker a little. I was all huffy because the day didn’t follow my plan and turn out the way I had organized it in my mind. I had a schedule and I wanted that item checked off my list today! I wanted to look at my pretty new towels and shower curtain and clean, freshly painted walls right now…not tomorrow! I think I’ve been down that road before! It wasn’t good enough for me to realize that at some point tomorrow, I will have everything I wished for. The little toddler in me came peeking out because I didn’t get my way. Then, I felt that tender tug at my heart which was the Father trying to help me understand he had a lesson for me today.
God says “behold I make things new”. He does that with his perfectly timed answers to our prayers but we get impatient like I did with the bathroom project. If I would have rushed and re-hung everything, I wouldn’t have given the paint the proper time to dry and cure in this humid weather. I would have ended up ruining something in my haste. I realized how many times I try to rush the Father and jump to the end before I’ve allowed him the time to work things for his purpose. I will be patient and tomorrow, probably before lunchtime, I will behold a new bathroom and I will be happy. As I finish up tomorrow, you can bet I’ll take my time and do careful work knowing that the Father who loves me will be doing exactly the same thing.
A Seed To Plant: Be like Jesus, take some time to go off alone and pray. Offer your list of places you’d like to invite the Father to make you new and then patiently wait for his intercession!
Blessings on your day!
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