Three months into the 2012, and I have not blogged. January and February were very mild this year in these parts. We had buttercups bloom as early as late January, which made me a very happy camper. God knows when you need a pick-me-up. After the tragedy of fall and subsequent grieving, He sends blooms in the middle of winter to reassure me that hope, indeed, lives. I never doubted that He was by my side. I never doubted that He would get me through. But he sent beautiful blooms this year during what is supposed to be the coldest month. During the season where sunset comes early, where gray clouds are supposed to dominant the days, and birds are long gone. But we had birds too. Flowers and songs. Such joy it gave my heart. Day after day after day, my God reveals this everlasting and ever so breathtaking love He has for me.
Every day He takes me by the hand and says, "My daughter, I am here for you today. What shall we do?" I'm sure He has something in mind, but the God I serve likes to hear what I think, too, sometimes. The God I serve likes to listen to my heart and my dreams and my desires. We've talked a lot about that. I am confident that the One who made me knows this old heart of mine. When you know that you know that you know someone really loves you, you don't mind sitting and listening to them. You don't mind giving up your will for theirs, when you know that their will is to make your life better. When you know that they have your best interest in mind. Sometimes a challenge is presented or a choice. Give up that for this. Sometimes He just wants us to ask. "Lord, which way is best? What do I choose?"
I am reminded of a Vacation Bible School lesson my mother taught one time. Two presents. One was wrapped in beautiful shiny paper with one of those big bows. The other present was in a plain paper grocery bag that was crumpled and torn. She asked for a volunteer. A little girl excitedly goes up. She is asked to choose a gift. Of course, she chooses the one that appears to be the best. She chooses the pretty one. The other gift is handed to someone on the front seat. I forget whom. "Now open your presents," she said. When the little girl opened her gift, it was empty. Completely empty. When the little boy opened his gift, it contained the prize. What was the lesson we learned from that? Not to judge from appearances? Looks can be deceiving? Choose wisely? Did either child ask, "What's inside? What is it exactly?" Did either child say, "Give me what you want me to have?" No. Because the expectation was that the better gift was in the most beautiful package. Now, the person who gave the gifts knew exactly which one held the prize. But she was never asked anything about it.
Sometimes when God says give up that for this, it is because the prize is somewhere we totally don't expect it to be. Sometimes the glitter and glitz turns our human heads, and we get away from what is most important. We lose sight of what is priority. Sometimes people are broken or crumpled or plain or basic brown bag. But that person is still a true gift. That person might hold the beauty inside waiting for you to discover it. Is that to say that you can't have pretty wrapping too? No. It's just saying that often we do not know that the buttercups are just beneath the snow, that the sun is just before breaking through the grey clouds, and the birds are just before returning to the barren trees. Just because it looks like winter, does not mean that the gifts of spring are dead. God knows when the timing is right. He knows what you need and when to give it to you. Be ready. Your gifts are coming. Ask, seek, knock. Choose wisely friends. And enjoy the blessings when they come.