Screaming Babies and a Patient God
Learned a couple of things from the kid this week, thought I’d share…
So…I’m sure you parents can picture this:
It’s about 2pm, time for the afternoon feeding. I have the bottle warmed and ready, burp-cloth on my shoulder, and as soon as Grace sees me walk in, she starts howling. I mean, the really ticked-off, outraged, “Gimme what I want and gimme it now!” kinda bellowing!
So, I put down the bottle, pick her up, and let her scream in my ear for 10 minutes until she quiets down. As soon as the tears (and shrieks) subside, I pop the bottle in her mouth and we’re all smiles again.
Except…that it was 10 minues of pure hell. The cries, the crocodile tears, ripping my heart out, all I want to do it give in and make it stop…and at the same time I’m telling myself, knowing she doesn’t understand, “I can’t give in, or it will be like this every day…”
Then, as the bottle is disappearing in healthy chugs, I realize…THIS is what God does with me all the time. The things I want, the things I demand at the top of my voice, things that I know I’ll just die if I don’t get RIGHT NOW… he makes me wait for, or even denies me. And, just maybe, I learn a little patience…that I won’t really DIE if I don’t get what I want right now, or even at all.
Next day, same feeding time, I plop the kid down on my lap, pick up the bottle and…realize that I have to go to the bathroom…really bad. The lease has expired on my morning pot of coffee, and it won’t wait the 15-20 minutes that feeding the girl will take.
Soooo…I set down the bottle, which Gracie has been eyeing intently, and put her back in her walker…where she immediately goes postal.
What had I done? Well, in her little eyes, I’d shown her a bottle (the promise) and then taken it away. She didn’t understand that I would be right back, that the promise was still waiting for her right there on my desk and in a couple of minutes (the right time) it would be hers.
As far as she was concerned the promise was broken, gone forever, and all she knew was that she was still hungry…and I had forsaken her.
How often, when we don’t get what we want RIGHT NOW, do we assume that God has broken His promises to us, that our current circumstances are forever, and that our needs will never be fullfilled, when in reality, God ALWAYS keeps his promises in His perfect time?
Maybe next time, when God has somethings that’s better for me, I’ll be able to lay down what I want “right now” and wait (without throwing a fit), because I’ve learned that, #1, my screams (or my anger, or my bitterness) won’t be rewarded. And, #2, maybe I can deny myself the instant gratification, knowing “now is not forever” and that there’s always something better waiting for me in God’s perfect timing…