I have to get my silliness out of the way first. When this subject came up last during last weeks’ church service, I was pretty willing to sacrifice one of my sons, and I was about to the point that I was ready to say, sure God, you can have them, ALL of them!! But I realize that was just aggravation mixed with sarcasm and just plain silliness, and what a combination that made!! NOT REAL GOOD!!!
So, sometime after the sermon, my right brain was conversing with my left brain and they decided that sacrificing my own child in todays time, was probably not a good idea. Besides, God hasn’t asked me too!! But we were asked last week by Bro. Jared to list somethings that we would NOT part with under no circumstances. Once we finished our lists, he told us, then we were to pray over this list until we would gladly give God whatever He asked of us. After all, it is all His anyway! Everything we have on this earth belongs to God. He just decided to loan it to us to see what we did with it. We are told to be good stewards of the gifts God gives us. Have we been?
I wonder how many people actually filled out their list? I started several times throughout the week, but each time I would sit and just stare at the words on that paper. I couldn’t write anything down on there! I thought about my material stuff, which if you have ever been in my scrap room you know is a BUNCH of stuff!! No, God can have all that if He tells me to get rid of it tomorrow, I will donate it to the church, or wherever God tells me.
Next thought was of my car. I love my car even if I am uncomfortable when I drive it, but that’s because of my back problems. I have always wanted a sporty car and I finally got one!! Now I wish I had been more patient when I decided to buy that car. As much as I love my car, I don’t want it any more, so YES, God can have my car if He wants it. But that attitude or way of looking at it is not what God wants to see in me! He wants to see me willing to give to Him until it HURTS! So I knew I needed to think a bit more about this list!! Seriously now! (But I do love my car 🙂 )
OK, so seriously, I thought. Don’t be silly but be realistic. What are some of my gifts from God that I would willingly give to Him if asked. That’s a tough question!!! It is still haunting me! Because, if I think of it in the way that I am supposed to, there is not one thing that I have that I would choose before God! Honestly, I do think that, no; I KNOW THAT!! Now there are lots of things that it would be really hard to give to God if He told me too. I might want to try to get Him to discuss it with me a bit first, but eventually He is going to get His way, so I might as well just do it from the start, right?
Right. UMHUM……. So some things that I could put on my list would be, my family, my pets, my house, my car, my husband and his various “toys”. Virtually everything my husband owns is considered a toy. His personal vehicle is not driven much because he drives a work vehicle daily. I have to admit, the thought of giving up my children, or grandchildren hurts me to the core, especially those grandbabies. The mere thought of loosing them just tears my heart into pieces!! But, they are a gift from God and at some point, He is going to want to call them home again. Who am I to think that I should be considered special by Him so that He would not ask me to give up my kids or grandkids? I’m no different from anyone else, I’m not special in any way, except maybe for the fact that I do love God!! I KNOW that everything I have, from my family, house, vehicles, clothes, pets, down to the smallest little jewel or piece of decorative paper in my scrap room, are all gifts loaned to me by God! If He so chooses, He can take any and all of it away from me, whenever He wants. I pray that doesn’t happen, but I have no choice except to say, they are yours God! If you want them back, I can only hope that I have been the kind of steward you had hoped I would be.
I know in my past I have NOT been a good steward of anything. I have wasted more money on clothes, scrap stuff, and various other stuff that I just felt I had to have at the time. But, that’s part of the reason we go to church, to give us an idea of things we are doing wrong and/or letting us know what we are doing right!! But just going to church doesn’t give you the whole picture, it is just one of the steps you have to take. You have to read your Bible, every day. You have to follow up on what you were told from the pulpit on Sunday, help yourself understand it better. But the most important thing we MUST do, each and every day, as often as possible, and if there are times we think nothing is possible, you surely need it then, and that would be PRAYER! We all need more prayer in our lives. We need to be praying more, as well as being prayed for!
When you grew up in a household that you rarely even heard the word pray, much less did so; a household that never went to church as a family, (I don’t recall ever seeing my parents in a church, except when I was married, or my brother was married). That is so very sad, because I look back now and I see so many things I missed out on because my parents didn’t take me to church. I could be so much more advanced in my understanding of God, the Bible, and all these prophecies I hear about, the various Bible stories I hear either being told, or referred to. It is almost like a prick in my heart when I hear the phrase “we all know the story of….” because chances are that, no, I don’t know that story. I might have heard mention of it once or twice before, but I never studied it!
All of this I say to remind myself, and anyone who reads this blog, that you need to be in church. You need to be in your Bible. Take your family to church. If you don’t have a family, then find one to go with, or even better-invite them to go to church with you! My husband and I did take our family to church, but it was so sporadic, as well as we didn’t practice what we had heard in our household, so my kids know who Jesus is, and they know about the plan of salvation (they have all been saved and baptized, PRAISE GOD!), but again, so much time has been wasted. If we had kept them in church regularly maybe some things would be different now.
This leads me to say just how proud I am of my daughter. She is my oldest child and is a wonderful mother to 4 of the most adorable kids in the whole world, and an amazing wife to her husband of 9 years, and an inspiration to me on a regular basis!! She will do anything for you up to the point of feeling used. But what makes me most proud is that she and her husband (when he doesn’t have to work) are taking their kids to church. It is tough on her on days her husband is working, because that leaves all the responsibility of getting all the kids ready and loaded up, without forgetting any diapers for Abby, or even worse, THE BINKY!!! But she still tries! Lots of times she doesn’t make it to Sunday School when she is doing it all on her own and I blame myself for that. I could easily get myself up a little earlier, get myself dressed and ready and then go over to her house (next door to mine) and help her get the kids ready, but I haven’t done that yet. I am going to make a conscious effort to do this from here on out! Lord, I pray that you remind me on Saturday nights to go to bed a little earlier so I can get up Sunday morning a little earlier, and be able to help Crystal get the kids ready.
I am praying for my boys, that they will all three decide or realize that they can’t do things on their own and expect the results they hope for. I pray they realize that they need to get back to what they were doing as kids, only be more committed to it, and that would be going to church and hearing the word of God. That will be the first step for them. I ask and invite, but I can’t tie them up and make them go. I know they believe in God, they have just been going down this path they are on for so long, it is going to take some major work on my part, and their father’s part as w Tell, to get them to take a detour from this path they are on, and get on the right one for a change. I pray they do this soon, for their sakes as well as for the sake of their children. All children should be going to church every chance they get. They need to learn about God, Jesus, salvation, redemption, sin, forgiveness, etc. They need to learn that Christmas is not about Santa and presents, but that it is about when we celebrate the birth of our Lord, Jesus Christ. And they need to know that Easter is not about a bunny and eggs, but that it is when we commemorate the death of Jesus on the cross and His resurrection on the third day! They need to be taught about salvation, heaven and hell. They need to hear all those stories that I didn’t get to when I was growing up!
I do remember a Bible that we had, or it might have been a story book, but it was stories about Jesus. I can remember being small and looking through that book for the beautiful pictures of Jesus and some of the various things that He did while He was on earth. My favorite was the painting of Jesus with the children around him, “Let the children come unto me”. I will never forget that!