A Litte Background
I am notorious for buying books and then never having time to read them. I’m sure none of you do that, but it is a thing that happens to me often. I love to read and have stacks of books that I WILL get to one day!
Many years ago, I headed up the children’s Christmas play at the church we attended. The first year I was the only person willing to do it but I enjoyed it so much that I ended up leading it for the next 2 years as well. It was a lot of work but it was so rewarding! I would begin searching in July for the perfect little Christmas program for the kids. It had to have a great theme, some humor and of course really great music. By August I had the program in hand and was listening to the music whenever I was in the car by myself so that I would know every word before I started working with the kids. The most difficult part of the entire project was always deciding who would play which role in the play. It was inevitable that some child was going to be hurt that they didn’t get the role they wanted. I dreaded the day of announcing the roles of the play.
One year in particular, I had a very difficult time deciding which play to do. I ended up choosing a play that included a theme of “giving” for the kids involved. The plan was for them to collect shoes to donate to the homeless shelters in town. I prepared big boxes to place in the church foyer for the donations. The play incorporated a beautiful story about showing God’s love to others by meeting their basic needs. Even after I decided, I had doubts about whether I chose the right program for our kids. Maybe it was too serious? Here we were focusing on a topic most kids are oblivious to. It seemed that things were not going as I had planned and I really began to doubt myself.
I presented the play to the kids in late August that year. We listened to the CD in kids church together and then began the list of who was interested in which role in the play. By the end of October, we had assigned roles and started practicing each week. By the end of November, the kids had memorized most of their lines but something still just didn’t seem to click.
Long Lost Book
Around this time, I began decorating my home for Christmas- bringing out all the boxes of Christmas decorations and family momento’s of Christmas pasts. As I rummaged through one of the boxes, I came across a book that I had bought 7 years before to read with my kids through the Advent season. It was one of those books that I never even cracked open. I decided to sit down and read the first story in the book immediately.
“Chicken Soup for the Soul- Christmas Version”
All week I had been doubting the kids play at church: did I choose the wrong one??? The kids just weren’t even TRYING to learn the songs this year. Most of the kids knew the speaking parts but the songs just weren’t clicking for some reason.
But then, the first story I read in the book that night was about a man witnessing some local teenagers on a side walk in town. The teens were riding their skateboards on the sidewalk when they stopped to talk to a homeless man on the street. As the man watched, the teens began removing their shoes, letting a homeless man try on their sneakers. The boys then gave him the socks off their feet and the shoes that fit him best. On a cold night. The teen Left the place barefoot- riding a skateboard!
And our play that year was about meeting the basic needs of people to show God’s love by donating SHOES!!!
What a powerful confirmation that was for me. Seven years before, I had bought a book that God would use to quell my doubts. So I knew it would all be ok. I was doing what God wanted me to do. I sat, reading that story with tears streaming down my face. It IS the right play for the kids! I love God’s sense of humor! HE”S got this- I just need to do my part and leave the rest up to HIM!
When God Speaks
Sometimes when God speaks, it’s just a gentle reminder to calm our minds that want to question everything. That’s what I think of when I hear people talk about a “still, small voice”. It’s a confirmation that can come in so many different ways.
- Psalms 29:4 (NIV)The voice of the Lord is powerful; the voice of the Lord is majestic.
- Job 11:7 (NIV)“Can you fathom the mysteries of God? Can you probe the limits of the Almighty?
- Colossians 1:10 (NIV)so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God,
My prayer for you today is that you will ask God to help you with those things you are worrying about. And then, keep your heart and mind open for that “still, small voice”, the voice of the One who loves you more than you can imagine!