God Cares About Pink Plastic Phones

Got your attention didn’t it? No, I have not lost my mind nor did I receive a “new rev from hev”. However, I am convinced that God does indeed care about pink plastic phones. Lest you think I am daft let me tell you a story and then judge for yourself if the Almighty might not indeed care about a worthless plastic toy.

The background to the story is that Mrs. Pauper is a true Proverbs 31 kinda gal and is constantly looking for ways to enlarge our gates by bringing in profit from home enterprise. One of her favorite ways to do this is through participating in a large consignment sale of children’s items that happens twice a year. This year it was decided that a kitchen set we had which no longer had a home in the Little Pauper’s room would be included in this sale. The only problem? This kitchen set had a pink plastic “cordless” phone that belonged to it which had suddenly gone AWOL.  Mother Pauper and the Little Pauper searched high and low, every nook, cranny, toy-box and crevice was searched thoroughly but the little plastic phone was nowhere to be seen. After a late-night cleaning session on the Little Pauper’s room by my girls and a search of the rest of the house by The Pauper the search was abandoned. Silently in the Living room I asked the Father to show us where this phone was so that Mrs. Pauper could include this item in the consignment sale. Meanwhile unbeknownst to me, Mother Pauper and The Little Pauper were assailing the throne of Grace in the bedroom as the search wound down with Mother Pauper reminding The Little Pauper that God knew exactly where the phone was and he was more than able to reveal its location. Then the search was called off on account of darkness and fatigue at which point “night time routine” (Bible time, prayer, singing, kisses, secret telling and cover tucking) commenced which eventually gave way to the sleep we all needed.  This brings us to the reason I think God cares about pink plastic phones because the next morning while in the shower I “remembered” (or maybe the Holy Spirit reminded me is more like it) where I had seen that phone last and in the quiet early morning stillness I walked right to the box in which this very naughty toy was hiding.

Now does God really “care” about a plastic toy like he cares for you and I? The obvious answer is no! However, it is precisely because he cares for you and I that at times it does matter to him where a plastic toy may be lurking. Is this because he wants all of us to be happy, play with toys and eat cake? No! It is because that pink plastic phone provided an opportunity for Mother Pauper and I to practice Deut. 6 and Psalm 78:

Deuteronomy 6:4-9 ESV

4 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. 8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

Psalm 78:1-4 ESV
1     Give ear, O my people, to my teaching;
incline your ears to the words of my mouth!

2     I will open my mouth in a parable;
I will utter dark sayings from of old,

3     things that we have heard and known,
that our fathers have told us.

4     We will not hide them from their children,
but tell to the coming generation
the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might,
and the wonders that he has done.

(emphasis added)

in which we could remind The Little Pauper of her prayer the night before and then point to a tangible answer to HER petition. What better way to illustrate to her that God hears our prayers and is powerful to do what we cannot. I cannot tell you how humbled and yet excited God-moments like this make me. I am baffled that the King of the Universe would entrust the spiritual upbringing of anyone to such an imperfect creature like myself but for his own glory he does and I love the opportunity to talk about our God’s great deeds. What a privilege!!!!

This week has been a GREAT week to speak of those marvelous works because not only did God reveal the location of the phone but he has brought to the fore 2 other great answers to prayers lifted up by all of our family. One of these involved Mr. H, one of my “big” bosses, bringing by a card I had written to him when I was interviewing for my current position at work in which I had written that I was praying that God would give them wisdom as they hired for the position (something all of us had prayed at the time including The Little Pauper). Mr. H told me that he was sure that God had answered that prayer and I should take the card home to show The Little Pauper the God does answer when we pray.

The second (or is that third?) answer is one that has been long in coming. You see for the last 3 years we as a family have been suffering from secondary infertility. Even The Little Pauper has been praying for almost a year for the Lord to give us more children and her brothers and sisters. Well, we found out Friday that we are PREGNANT!!!!! (more to come on that later) So see what I mean, it has been an exciting week of answered prayer and speaking of the great deeds of YHWH.

So yeah, God does care about pink plastic phones, jobs, and little white sticks with 2 pink lines because a 4 year old needs to know that God hears and acts for his own glory when we pray.

Thank you Father for hearing and answering so that I can speak your praises to my family.

One of "those" days

Have you ever had one of “those” days? You know the kind where everything is a blur and nothing seems to come without great struggle? I have had a few of those lately. Things on the work and home front seem to come in rapid fire succession with not hint of ease or rest. It’s not that I expect things to be easy (not that I would mind if it were), the difficulty is that within the whirlwind it is very difficult to focus and to think deeply. You see I am a thinker, there is never “nothing” going on behind my eyes. This is how I process life, a cerebral wrestling match to understand and organize the things in and around me through the lens of the Word of God. I struggle when I can not understand how what I see and experience is to be viewed from the perspective of YHWH as revealed in his Word. For this to happen takes time to think and meditate on the scriptures allowing their truth to wash over my experience bathing it, cleansing it from the deception of this fallen world, scrubbing it from the corrosion of self-deception that will lurk in the recesses of my being until I am free of this body of sin, allowing the light of the Spirit of God to illumine the matter until the Truth himself speaks from the pages of the Holy Writ calming the storm of the mind. Often this may be in the form of the simple need to acknowledge that He is God and I am not, His ways are higher than mine, His purpose may not be evident to me but His promise is He is actively working to cause ALL things to work for my good and His Glory. In other rare times He may benevolently choose to show me a bit of the “why”, a moment to glimpse the corner of the blueprint in the dim light of the near darkness that swallows this life seeing only a single detail of his master plan.

However, life rarely grants these moments of respite and thought without our violently waging war to gain this time alone to be about the business of our Father. Is this not why the scriptures tell us “Be still and know that I am God”? Is this not why Jesus urged his disciples to “come away” for a little while? Or why our Lord himself stole away regularly to pray?

I struggle mightily with this. I so easily forget where the real battle lies and become distracted with the cacophony of this life. I am stretched thin and am so unsuited within myself to the mighty responsibilities to which He has called me. Pride says, “if he has called me to this I must be able to do it!” Humble faith and worship says, there is nothing good in me, I am but a wretch, anything good that comes out of me is His power at work in this despicable body of sin, “Please Jesus do in me what I cannot do, nor would desire to do in and of myself! Glorify yourself by doing what only you can by working in such a horrible sinner like me!”

Lord Jesus, I am the wretch the song sings of and I cannot keep your commands by myself. Please do what I can’t. I desire to be a faithful servant please help my unbelief!

The Joys of a Tent-Fort

Well, It has been an interesting weekend around here. Mrs. Pauper is sick with the stomach bug that seems to be traveling around down here. This means that the Little Pauper and I were left to our own devices over the last two days. For the most part that means that we read books and worked on our home remodel. Today however, I went into the Little Pauper’s bedroom and to find her laying under a blanket which has been draped (as best she could) over a child’s armchair she has laid on its’ side. When I asked her what she was doing she said she was making a fort but she needed help with the roof. So I took her blanket and tucked one side into a high drawer in her chest of drawers (maybe not the safest plan upon reflection but it is what happened). This created a cascade of giggling to come out of her little body as she spent the next hour or so playing in this small fort.

As I went about the very adult things I “had” to do over that hour somewhere in the back of the mind belonging to the man close friends during my high school years referred to as “Grandpa” was the voice of the little boy from long ago who had become a master tent-fort builder in his own right. You see your body may look very different over the years but deep within every adult still dwells the child who knows just where to put the clothespins so they won’t slip and exactly how tight you can stretch a sheet and it still stay under the books you put on it to weigh it down. This child knows that it is the sacred obligation of every master tent-fort builder to pass on the earthshaking and important secret arts learned in the hours spent building during those magic years when the greatest concerns were, “will we run out of sheets?” and “how long will Mom put up with this?”. That child knows the  lessons (and fun) earned through the bumps on the noggin when designs don’t quite work must be shared with those still little enough today to be enraptured with the worlds to be created from a few worn bed-sheets and clothespins. It was this little boy that began to clamor and like most little ones would not be stilled until he could share. So with a whisper from days long ago when the Pauper was much smaller and the world was much less complicated, the little boy began to call “Don’t you remember?” and it was then I knew adulthood would have to wait a bit.

This is how it came to be that the Little Pauper is sound asleep tonight in the cave like darkness of a massive tent-fort built around her bunk bed. Thus the unbroken chain passed down from one generation to the next through the ages is alive and well here in the heart of an old tent-fort maker and around the bed of the next tent-fort Frank Lloyd Wright.

Greetings

Hello Everyone,

As I begin this adventure I am hoping that this is profitable for both of us. I am hoping to encourage you in your faith while improving my writing skills. I also hope that this proves to be a worthwhile discipline for me to write regularly for something outside of school or sermons.

Please check back regularly and give me a shout if this has not been updated recently.

Soli Deo Gloria,

The Madman