… Remain in my love… John 15:9
Sunday was a rainy, soggy humid day for a parade but Dave and I went anyway.
We went for a few reasons. First, to support a local parish summer picnic, second because we wanted to see the Homecoming queen riding in a golf cart throwing candy and third because I love watching all the little kids laugh and squeal as they scramble to the curb to collect all the candy thrown from the floats. I love to watch them cover their little ears when the fire trucks go by and clap their hands to the beat of the PW marching band. They don’t have a care in the world and gathering parade candy is the best summer activity ever; even if the candy does land in a rain puddle!
As the parade goes on, the kids always seem to inch farther and farther away from the safety of the curb and parents are constantly pulling them back and very often they protest. There is a constant creeping forward to get a better look at what’s coming or a closer vantage point when the next handful of candy is hurled towards them. For the kids it’s all about the grab, for the parents it’s all about the safety and the battle continues until the last tractor passes by.
I snatched four small words from John’s Gospel that remind me of the kids at the parade. When we really think about the way we live, we are a lot like those kids at the parade. We want to eek ahead and get a good look at what’s coming. We want to make sure we will be able to scoop up the best blessings before someone else gets a chance. We don’t want to be the one who is left with rain puddle tootsie rolls. As we dart around trying to arrange things so we can be comfortable and happy we sometimes stray far away from safety. The love of the Father is a little like that yellow line painted along the curb; it’s there to keep us safe and when we wander away we are in danger.
Our lives aren’t supposed to be comfortable, happy and easy all the time. Suffering and difficulty are what build our trust in God and they are the places we see Him working in our lives the most clearly. When we cling to him and love him we are safe no matter what seems to swirl around us but if we get too far from the curb and try to take care of things ourselves we have trouble. The Father knows exactly what we need, exactly when we need it and we need to stay on the curb where he can keep us safe and be patient.
I was thinking about that yesterday as I watched a preschooler throw a fit because his dad wouldn’t let him off the curb to rescue some candy and suckers from a puddle. His dad told him to be patient and something better would land near him. I laughed out loud 30 seconds later when four Dove Chocolates landed right at the little boy’s feet. He was too young to understand the remarkable difference between a tootsie roll and a Dove bar but I got it and I was amazed at the way the Father showed me exactly what I should write about today. It was as if he leaned down and said, “Sheri, just tell them to remain in my love, where I can keep them safe from harm and I will offer something so much better than danger and soggy tootsie rolls.” It’s amazing what good things come when we trust our Father!
A Seed To Plant: In prayer this week, ask God to show you those areas in your life where you eek ahead of him and stray from the safety of his love.
Blessings on your day!
Copyright 2015 Sheri Wohlfert
Image copyright 2015 Sheri Wohlfert. All rights reserved.
About the Author
Sheri is a Catholic wife, mom, speaker and teacher. She uses her great sense of humor and her deep faith to help others discover the joy of being a child of God. Her roots are in Kansas but her home is in Michigan. The mission of her ministry is to encourage others to look at the simple ways we can all find God doing amazing things smack dab in the middle of the laundry, ball games, farm chores and the hundred other things we manage to cram into a day. Sheri also writes at JoyfulWords.org.