Age 23

I’ve decided that I’m both madly in love and completely dissatisfied with this stage in my life.  I think I’ll tell you why I’m in love first.
I guess I’m in love with the possibilities.  I love how I can enjoy becoming who I want to be and who God wants me to be.  I can focus on building my skills, trying out different things, and actually having dreams.  In a lot of ways, I hate the thought of growing up because it seems like most grown-ups who are married with children just decide that’s all to life.  I’m too much of a free spirit for that, especially right now.  I love doing unusual things because it’s fun and I enjoy making memories.  There’s so much I want to do before I settle down.  So much I want to do.
And it seems like the sky is really the limit too.  I could technically just pick up and move halfway across the country and get a job without much problem.  Not that I would do that, but this time in my life would be the easiest to do that.  I could decide to do missions and move to another country on a short or long-term mission venture.  I could work in whatever non-profit organization I want to, and dedicate my time and energy to things like that.  There’s so many possibilities.  It’s exhausting to think about, especially when I can hardly make it through a work day without being completely worn out.  Usually when I get home from work I have nothing left.  All I want to do is sleep.  Most of the time, I don’t even want to go to the effort of eating. 
In a lot of ways, I feel like I have no life or identity outside of work.  The other day I thought about buying some different color flip flops for when I’m not working, and then I immediately vetoed the idea because when am I not at work?  Part of this is probably because when I’m home, my brain is still there half the time.  You know what I want more than anything?  I want a vacation.  I want maybe 4 days where I can do whatever I want to and actually have enough energy to want to do what I want to do.  I love my job, but it’s not my dream, and I’m so tired.  I focus so hard on doing my best all day that I am at my job.  I want to do whatever I am responsible for well.  I don’t know how to do anything halfway.  I don’t want to do my job halfway.
Age 23:  I love it.  I hate it.  You know why else I hate it?  I’m too old for the college kids, the majority of my friends have moved away, and I’m too young to hang out with the people I work with (their decision, not mine).  I have a couple friends that I hang out with, but everyone is so busy that it’s hard to get together.  It’s like I’m in my own little world floating.  Sometimes I want to talk to someone or hang out…but I don’t know with who and not many people are interested in doing some of the crazy things I want to do.  Married women think I’m nuts, and we don’t have a whole lot in common.  When I try to talk to someone about this, I feel so immature and unfeeling…yet overemotional at the same time.  I’m like a walking oxymoron.  And every time I see that word I think of that one bearded guy with the oxyclean commercials.
I don’t want to have a boring life.  I don’t want to have a meaningless busy life.  Almost all the adults I know fit in one of those two categories.  I don’t want to be like that.  How can I get away from it?  I refuse to drink coffee, first of all because it’s gross and second of all because that’s what older women do when they sit at a round table and talk about all the things they saw at Kohl’s the other day on the sale rack.  Really?  I don’t fit.  Anywhere.  I’m like that puzzle piece you find under your couch while you’re spring cleaning, and you can’t figure out where it came from.  It’s depressing.  I can become whoever I want to, and that’s all fun and exciting, except nobody cares.  Yay.  I’m just going to become whoever I want to be anyway.  God cares.  That’s all that matters.  It’ll be a sweet ride.

The Desire of My Heart

Dear God,
I’ve been thinking about a lot of things today.  I’ve talked to you about a lot of things today.  It seems like many times my devotions in the morning talk about what you will teach me that day.  I’m not sure that today I was a very good learner, or maybe this lesson will take more than a few hours to learn.  I guess I’m kinda confused.  I don’t know what to do with this verse:  “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart (Psalm 37:4).”
I guess for me, I just recently discovered that it’s ok to want something.  I always thought that wants were bad or evil somehow.  But there’s a difference between wants and the desires that David talks about here…and that’s where it gets a lot deeper.
The desires of my heart aren’t like things I would ask for on a Christmas list or even that I would be comfortable or healthy all the time.  That’s not the kind of thing that I’m asking for when I pray to You, and You know that.  However, I think I need to learn how to pray, because I’m pretty sure that I don’t do it nearly enough or to the degree that you desire from me.  I guess I’m still learning what the desire of Your heart is.
I know that You long that everyone would know You, and that the pain and the evil in the world would cease.  Someday You will call an end to that, but You’re waiting because You want to give people more time.  The ending of pain also means the ending of a choice for so many, and if I could understand in the least bit how deeply You love every single person You have made, I’m sure that I’d be crushed.  In light of that, there’s really nothing in my life I desire that compares with eternity.  I know that You desire more of me, and that I would come to know You more.  You love the times that we spend together, and so do I.  Sometimes it seems like eternity would be a blessing because nothing could ever get in between us again.
Every day I’m learning more and more what it means to delight myself in You.  I love getting to know You and seeing how You are working in the world.  I love coming to understand how much You love me.  I love seeing Your fingerprints on the lives of those around me, even those who do not know You.  It is the desire of my heart to know You more.
It is also the desire of my heart to love someone for the rest of my life and to be a blessing to them.  Sometimes I don’t understand Your timing, but I know that You still have a lot of work to do in me.  I really begin to wonder if that desire will ever be fulfilled.  It is not so much that I long to be loved; I really want to be a support for someone else.  In Your way and in Your time.  I’m not quite sure how to “wait” for this.  I don’t know how to trust You.  Do I have anything that I need to do in the process?  Will You help me know?
I know that it is the desire of Your heart that no child would live without parents who love them and raise them well.  It is the desire of my heart to give my life to their care.  I believe with all my heart that You gave me that desire, and I pray so often that You would allow me the opportunity to do this.  In Your time and in Your way.  How can I be preparing for this best?  Should I get a business degree?  Another kind of degree?  Work super hard on paying off my loans?  Show me what I should be doing now to get ready for the day when You will open the door wide.
I have one more desire in my heart.  I long to be a woman of integrity.  I want to show Your joy and love to everyone I meet.  I want to be defined by Your kindness.  I want to be encouraging and uplifting in everything that I say and do, and I want to serve You well with all my heart.  I want to be responsible and a hard worker.  I want to be gracious, even on the bad days.  Will You teach me what it means to be transparent enough that You shine through me?  Will You show me how to trust You enough that I can love others that deeply?  Will You take away any bitterness, anger, or anything else that is ugly inside of me and truly make me a treasure?  God, I want to shine so bright for You.  That is the desire of my heart.
This is my prayer.  This is what I need You to know.  I will love You and serve You always, come what may.  I pray that You will work in me to bring You ultimate glory, and help me to be a blessing in the lives of everyone I meet.

The Choice

This afternoon I happened upon the song on my IPod called The One by Brandon Heath and it really clicked in my heart.  I wish everyone could hear this song, and really take the lyrics to heart.  Here they are:
If I see one more light that’s fading
Hear about one more broken dream
Pray for just one more faith that’s dying
It’s one too many

And if I see one more child walking
Just one more mile for water
If I wait one more minute longer
It’s one too many

When I think of what could be
If we let our hearts believe
That it takes just one
Just one could turn this all around

And if we’re living history
How will they think of you and me
If it takes just one, just one
What if, what if, what if I’m the one?

It takes one, takes one, one
It takes one, takes one, one
It takes one, takes one

If I hear one more widow crying
‘Cause there’s no one by her side
And if I see one more family breaking
It’s one too many

If there’s one thing that I’m sure of
If there’s one thing that I know
You could be one in a sea of faces
Or you could be one more chance for hope

When I think of what could be
If we let our hearts believe
That it takes just one
Just one could turn this all around

And if we’re living history
How will they think of you and me
If it takes just one, just one
What if, what if, what if I’m the one?

I see a nation without any walls
A beautiful haven for one and for all
I see a day when people are free
When shackles are broken and fall to the street

A voice, a cry, call out from on high
The first one of many, go lay down your life

When I think of what could be
If we let our hearts believe
That it takes just one
Just one could turn this all around

And if we’re living history
How will they think of you and me
If it takes just one, just one
What if, what if, what if I’m the one?

It takes one, takes one, one
(What if you’re the one)
It takes one, takes one, one
It takes one, takes one
(What if I’m the one)

I love the words:  you could be one in a sea of faces or you could be one more chance for hope.  That is the ultimate choice, isn’t it?  God doesn’t create us to blend in with our surroundings.  He created us to shine.  He talks about a lamp put on its stand and a city on a hill.  You can’t miss those things.  The world shouldn’t miss us.
That’s been the thing on my heart for these past six years.  I really want to give my life and heart to orphan care.  Knowing how to go about it is a hard thing.  Right now I have loans to pay off and quite a bit of growing up to do, not to mention learning and building skills.  However, I don’t believe that God wastes time.  I believe that He has a specific purpose for this in-between time, and I want to use it all well to His glory.
How can I be “the one” where I am right now?  How can I shine a light to the people I come into contact with every day?  Surely if I am faithful with the few things that God has given me, someday He will put me in charge of much.  He knows my heart and He is teaching me every day.  Someday He’s going to open the door for me to live abroad and care for the street children.  Until that day, I must not neglect the ministry that He has given me right here, right now.  Lord, please help me to not grow tired or frustrated as the time seems to pass slowly.
Even now I am faced with the choice:  will I be one in a sea of faces or one more chance for hope?  Do the people around me see the light that is shining?  In what ways could I shine brighter?  I love the movie Timeline and one of the lines from the movie I will never forget.  As one of the main characters is complaining to one of the other main characters about how historians live in the past, he tells his friend, “You make your own history.”  It is true that God calls and leads us in certain directions, but we are active participants with Him.  The choice of obedience is ours to make.  The choice to follow Christ and to seek Him with all our hearts is ours to make.  The Spirit is drawing everyone, but what makes the road that leads to life narrow is that few respond to that drawing.  Will you be one of the few?  Will you help to make that road a little wider?  Will you be the one to do that?
As for me, the choice is in front of me, but my direction is clear.  I choose to shine.  I choose to seek Christ with all my heart.  I choose to obey the calling of God to do whatever it is that He calls me to do.  I choose to wait expectantly, making the most of my time and my life.  Lord, my heart and my life is Yours.
So what will you do?  The choice is up to you.

Broken and Spilled Out

This morning Pastor Rick preached about the ascension in a way that I had never heard before.  He compared it to our fascination of stories of riches to rags and rags to riches.  He put it in better ways than I ever could, so I’m going to leave what he said as is and talk about what I took from his sermon.
He talked about how unusual and rare it is for someone to have much wealth and choose to empty themselves of that wealth.  That would only happen through great love and a passion for a great cause.  He mentioned St. Francis of Assisi who was born into wealth and privilege, and through a vision of Jesus as a beggar chose to put aside all that he had for the greater cause of knowing Christ more.  This is exactly what Jesus did.  He had the wealth and riches of heaven, and chose to put it all aside for the great love He had for us.  He entered our world, full of chaos, hatred, and rebellion and gave all that He had so that we might know Him.  This redeeming love is the same love that we are called to demonstrate through our lives.  How are we doing that now?
It’s such a simple and fascinating story, and like other stories sometimes we choose to close the book and put it back on the shelf.  However, this story is real and is still being written in our lives.  As I have been evaluating how I want the ebb and flow of my life to go, I am challenged by this love that gave all for me.  How will I live my life?  How will my story be set apart from the tens of thousands of Americans who are living the dream?  I have been born to privilege simply by living where I am.  How will I follow the example of Jesus by choosing to seek what is eternal over what is temporary?  How will that affect even the smallest of decisions I make?
I have been thinking about how my time with my non-Christian friends has been changing me.  I have had to rely much more on God to keep me close to His heart.  However, I have felt the burden of a life lived without Him as I look into their eyes.  I wonder how they see us Christians.  Usually, I don’t have to wonder too much because they freely say what is on their mind.  Much of what they say is true.  Yes, there are a lot of issues in the church.  There is a lot of hypocrisy.  There is a lot of complacency.  What’s the point?  They’re judgmental and perfectionistic.  They’re cliquey.  Honestly, when comparing my time with church people and my non-Christian friends, often I will opt to hang out with my non-Christian friends, because I find a refreshingly raw honesty and transparency in their lives that is usually non-existent in the church.  I wonder why this is?  I believe with all my heart that Jesus is the hope of the world, yet the people who have this hope don’t show it in the way that they live their lives and how they love others.
How is my life going to be different?  I could go on for a long time, and perhaps I should about how much we have forgotten what the Bible says.  We have forgotten the example of Jesus.  And you know what?  It’s disturbing and uncomfortable.  Who wants to give everything they have worked so hard to have?  Who wants to spend all their time working with people who most of the time could care less?  Who wants to be struck on the cheek and then turn the other one?  It’s doesn’t make sense.  However, until we see ourselves in the light of the amazing grace of God, we can keep asking ourselves what’s the point?  The truth is, Jesus’ life challenges us to live a new way and follow a different road, and ironically makes a lot more sense than the way the church lives now.  The way we’re doing it now, we’re saying one thing, and living another.  That is simply unbelievable, no matter how you look at it.  I wouldn’t want to follow that either.  St. Francis of Assisi said, “Preach the gospel to all the world, and when necessary, use words.”  We should all think long and hard about the message that is being preached through our lives.
Today as I was holding the communion bread and cup, I felt a strong conviction.  Pastor Rick has said the past couple Sundays, “The world is filled with center-seeking people.”  We all want the glory and the spotlight.  However, the Kingdom of God calls us to empty ourselves for the love of God, just as He emptied Himself for us.  It is not about us.  It is about this amazing and redeeming love of God.  For years through communion, God has spoken to my heart, “Don’t eat and drink this unless you mean it.”  What does it mean to eat this bread and drink this cup?  It means that I surrender all.  It means that I will no longer seek the center, unless that center is the heart of God.  It means that no matter what the cost, no matter where He calls me, no matter what I must sacrifice, I will give my everything to God.  Because I have been loved with an everlasting love, I will pour my love out at the feet of Jesus.
I want my life to be believable.  I want the words that I say to match the example of my actions.  Jesus says, “Do this in remembrance of me.”  Every day I will remember the commitment that I make when I take the bread and the cup:  the purpose of my life is to be poured out for love of my Jesus.
I am reminded of the old Steve Green song, “Broken and Spilled Out.”  It talks about the woman who brought a jar of expensive perfume and poured it out on Jesus’ feet.  One of the disciples was appalled at this, because surely there was much more productive and resourceful things that could have been done with this expensive jar of perfume.  It could have been sold and the money given to the poor.  However, Jesus defends the woman, because she understood the point.  Just like the jar, our lives are expensive and bought with the ultimate price of Jesus’ life.  Our purpose is to be emptied, or like the song says, broken and spilled out for love of our Jesus.  Here are the lyrics:
One day a plain village woman
Driven by love for her Lord
Recklessly poured out a valuable essence
Disregarding the scorn
And once it was broken and spilled out
A fragrance filled all the room
Like a pris’ner released from his shackles
Like a spirit set free from the tomb

Broken and spilled out
Just for love of you Jesus
My most precious treasure
Lavished on Thee
Broken and spilled out
And poured at Your feet
In sweet abandon
Let me be spilled out
And used up for Thee

Lord You were God’s precious treasure
His loved and His own perfect Son
Sent here to show me
The love of the Father
Just for love it was done
And though You were perfect and holy
You gave up Yourself willingly
You spared no expense for my pardon
You were used up and wasted for me

Broken and spilled out
Just for love of me Jesus
God’s most precious treasure
Lavished on me
You were broken and spilled out
And poured at my feet
In sweet abandon Lord
You were spilled out and used up for Me

In sweet abandon, let me be spilled out
And used up for Thee
This is the prayer of my heart.

Preliminary Introspective Thoughts

I want to be a woman who…

…loves God with all her heart and by the way she lives inspires others to love Him too.
…lives a life of beauty, inside and out.
…is not concerned by the opinions of others, but is creative, colorful, and joyful in everything.
…is fascinated in all that is alive:  animals, plants, people, etc.
…has the heart of a child but the wisdom of the elderly.
…listens intently to others when they speak and is a dependable confidant to all that come across her path.  Everyone is aware that she cares about them deeply no matter what they have done, what they believe, or who they are.
…establishes healthy boundaries with those around her and is able to communicate tactfully and graciously when others have cross those boundaries.
…is completely comfortable in her own skin and lives freely.
…understands the brevity of life but does not fear.  She knows that her heart is safe in the hands of God.
…takes care of herself physically, emotionally, spiritually, and mentally.
…does not hold grudges but deals with frustration and stress in a godly manner.
…lives out the words of the Bible, no matter how counter-cultural it may be to the world or the church.
…lives passionately to protect those who are helpless and marginalized, particularly orphans and street children.
…is brave to follow the will of God, no matter how dangerous or costly it may be.
…is constantly encouraging to those around her, building others up and never tearing anyone down.
…does not gossip, talk badly about anyone behind their backs (or in front for that matter), or allow unwholesome conversation around her.
…always takes advantage of every opportunity to spread joy to those around her.
…by simply being around her, others sense that they have just been in the presence of God.
…lives an honest life and doesn’t hide her emotions, but handles herself maturely and professionally when her job or the situation demands it.  She does not ever take her emotions out on those around her but rather she prayerfully turns her sadness into heartfelt love for others.
…is a blessing to everyone she knows.

The Dark Places of My Heart

So tonight I need to share some things that perhaps I have hardly shared with anyone before.  However, I think they are acceptable to be shared, and perhaps should have been shared a long time ago.  I just really need to be brutally honest about some things.
Tonight I went to dinner with my best friend Joanna.  She’s moving out to the east coast this weekend, and I’m having a really hard time with it.  She has been my absolute best friend for the past five years, and I can’t imagine my life without her.  If you know me, you know that I have a lot of “friends”, and I really do care about them deeply, but in most situations, they are closer to me than I am to them.  That’s just usually the way it goes with me, because I don’t generally assert myself to people unless I really trust them and I am positive they want to know me.  Joanna is one of those few people that I have let into the deep recesses of my heart, and I would have to say that she knows me better than anyone in my entire life.  She has seen every side to me and hasn’t turned her back on me.  She has gone through some serious dark times with me and I with her, and in a lot of ways has been the only friend to see everything that has happened the past five years.  Even when we were both abroad for a semester, it was during the same time, and we were each other’s support through that journey, as it was super difficult for both of us.  Words can’t describe the bond that we have, and I’ve basically been in mental shut down for the past day since I found out that she is moving so soon.  It’s really hard for me.  I feel stupid admitting that, and the whole time during dinner tonight she kept having to comfort me.  I’m just not good at this kind of thing.
I think that is part of the reason why I’ve just had a super hard day and have been so critical about everything.  I spent the morning pretty frustrated at the church and all the talk and dissention that goes on there.  I just don’t understand why so many people (and probably myself) have such an immature view on the purpose of the church and in how things need to be done.  We put so much importance on things that don’t matter and leave the things that do matter in the dust.  And we wonder why people don’t want to come to church, and why everyone outside the church thinks we’re ridiculous.  We live so anti-biblically it’s not even funny.  Not even remotely funny.  How did we get so off-base?
Then I spent the next few hours frustrated at men.  I think about every girl knows EXACTLY what I’m talking about here, and there’s not really a need to embellish.  However, I did consider a vow of celibacy strongly today, and I’m not quite sure that I have ruled it out.  However, if you are a godly man that is seeking the Lord with all your heart, CUTOS TO YOU.  You are few and far between, a rare jewel in a pile of rocks.  Usually the jewels have no interest in me, but I hope they find good wives that treasure them for the wonderful men they are.
Then I got an angry phone call, and in some ways I deserved the chewing out because there was something that I had been neglecting that I had not fully realized that I was neglecting.  However, the fact that the person who called was my friend caused the situation to be much more hurtful than it was intended or should have been.  It shook me up pretty badly.  I am used to dealing with angry people, but usually I can pass it off that they didn’t really mean that toward me or they are just in a hard place in their life and I can’t help them.  However, this was very personal, and a few tears were shed.  Hopefully no one saw.  For me, it’s hard to deal with someone who is angry with me, because that isn’t how I respond to things myself.  When I’m upset with someone enough to confront them about the issue, I try to handle it very calmly and I’m usually so concerned about hurting them that they end up comforting me.  That’s what made this so hard.
When work ended at 5:00, I just wanted to crawl in a hole and not come out.  Part of it was that I haven’t hardly had any free time for a couple weeks or longer.  I’ve been moving, and there’s so much involved in that.  Plus my parents had come to visit and they stayed with me while they were here, and last night I was so exhausted, I basically went to bed not long after I got off work.  I slept for at least 11 hours last night.  I could have kept sleeping pretty much all day today.  Judging by how the day went, maybe I should have.  Oh well, I guess everyone has to have bad days, right?
I remember thinking all day today, “All I need is a hug.”  I got to thinking about how people say that in order to be healthy, you have to be hugged pretty often (I forget how many times a day or week).  I get a hug maybe once every two or three weeks, and rarely is it a genuine hug.  Usually it’s a “I haven’t seen you in a long time and how are you doing?” sort of hug.  From a friend, well, I guess I don’t know too many huggy people.  Personally, and I hate to admit it, I need it.  I guess I haven’t seen myself as a person that really thrives on physical touch, but I think I need it more than I have admitted even to myself.
I felt today like there’s a giant dissatisfaction in my heart about my life right now.  I can’t quite put my finger on what it is.  I love my job, and I like going to my job.  I like most of the people I work with most of the time, and I always try to be a pleasant person to be around.  I feel like I don’t get enough time to really think about me though.  Maybe that comes with having the type of job I have, always dealing with people who are in some pretty deep struggles and are pretty hopeless.  I guess that’s bound to get to you from time to time.  And to be fair, I am pretty young to have a job like that.  So I guess I have some maturing to do.  There’s just a part of me that is deeply lonely, like I want to share life with someone but at the same time I don’t feel like I’m remotely ready for that.  There’s so much becoming that I want to do and I feel I have to do before that, but I feel so alone so much of the time.  It sounds crazy, but one of my favorite things about this new place I’m living is how much noise everyone makes all the time.  The dogs are always jumping up and down above me and the kids are running around.  I love it, because then I don’t feel so alone.  I so often feel like I have to face all my problems alone.  I have to come home to my fish and my geckos, but they can’t hold me when I cry.  I guess I’ve never really had that, so I don’t know why I would miss it.  Something deep inside of me must know that is wonderful.  Maybe my faith’s not strong or something, but I guess I just long to be close to someone, even if it’s just a friend.  And now my closest friend is moving away, and I don’t care how many times she tells me we’ll skype or text.  It’s just not the same as being there.  And people never talk as much as they promise when they move apart.  That’s just how it always turns out.
So tonight I’m going to wipe the tears away and go back to daydreaming of a day when things will hopefully be a little better.  Things are not terrible now, and I am blessed beyond my imagination.  However, I have noticed today so strongly (as I notice nearly every day) how lonely I really am.  It’s hard because there are people out there (and I’m sure everyone’s experienced this) that want to get close to me.  However, are they the type of people that I should get close to?  Usually not.  The problem in the past with me has been that I see the red flags, but choose to ignore them because I really want a friend.  I don’t want to do that again.  That turned out VERY BADLY a few times in the past, and one time in particular.  I don’t want to make the same mistakes I have in the past.  I usually handle things in a passive aggressive way because I don’t want to intentionally hurt someone.  Confrontation is not something that has ever happened well in my family, and I’m a little gun-shy about it all.  I need to get over that.  I need to learn to tell people how I feel more often.  However, I don’t want make a call to someone like I received today and have them hang up and start crying.  I don’t ever want that to happen.  I guess I need to sit down and really figure out who I want to be overall and how that shows itself in all these situations.  I’m not quite sure how to do that, and honestly it’s hard to find the time.  I feel like I’m at work ALL THE TIME.  I love my job so much, but it’s hard to be there for so many hours a week when there’s so much else I have to get done.  Life can get so overwhelming.  I just want to crawl up and sleep for a couple days.  I want to shut the world out.  I need for it to stop turning for just a while so I can figure out which way is up and which way is down.  I’m so exhausted from spinning in circles. 
Ok, that’s my really long rant.  I feel better now for having shared that.  I hope I haven’t offended anyone.  This is really what’s been going on in my head today.  I’m going to go to sleep now.

So I’m Sad Tonight

Yes, I finally identified an emotion that I’m feeling.  Paula, you’ll be so proud.  I guess that’s kind of how I’ve felt all day.  I’ve been really tired, and perhaps that’s part of it, but I guess some things are getting to me tonight.
I found out this evening that one of my best friends is moving across the country this weekend.  Tomorrow night is going to be the last time I will see her for a while.  I guess I don’t know how to deal with that.  I’ve had friends move away before, but this one’s different.
I have a cabinet sitting on my floor that I know I can’t figure out on my own, and that is seriously depressing me.  I figured out the fridge, but the cabinet is a pretty intense kit.  One of my pictures won’t stay up on the wall.  Did I mention that I’m tired?
So this is a whole blog about the fact that I identified an emotion that I am feeling.  Yay.  Now, you will all send me messages telling me that I just wasted five minutes of your life that you will never get back, and for that I am truly sorry.

The Eternal Parent

Today I got two baby panther geckos.  I spent the whole evening trying to make sure that they were ok.  These babies are maybe an inch long right now…and will only get to be about six inches full-grown.  They are native to the African island of Madagascar.  I can’t get over how little they are.  They’re smaller than my pinkie!
When I got home, I realized that I didn’t have a water or food dish (weren’t included in the kit), and the pet store was already closed.  Well, mama can’t leave her babies without water or food.  I drove all the way into town and bought a thing of yogurt (for the container) and some fruits and veggies that I could cut up and put in the homemade food dish.  I spent significant time cutting them up and making sure everything was ok for them. 
As I was driving home in the middle of all of this, I thought to myself how kind of ridiculous this was.  I mean, these are two little lizards.  However, they were dependent on me.  I had to provide for them.  Just then, God reminded me of how desperately He cares and provides for us.  The Bible talks about God clothing the lilies of the field and feeding the sparrows.  If He cares so deeply for the flowers that are here today and gone tomorrow, how much more He must care for us!  How much every little need that we have must make Him alert and attentive!
If we take the time to think about it, we are all blessed beyond our wildest imaginations.  I have been thinking about that tonight.  I have a roof over my head, food to eat, friends and family that care for me, and so much more that it would bore you even to list.  God has truly provided so much.  How interesting it is that we often focus all our attention on the one thing that is not going well, instead of the hundred things that are going fantastically.  Like I am aware that my geckos need to eat, need warmth, and need water, God knows what we need before we ask Him.  He cares for us like an eternal parent, awake both night and day to not only hear our cry but also to provide for the needs that we may not even be aware of yet.  What an awesome God is He!
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