When I got home from work today, Judah and his 4 cousins (all under the age of 4) were playing in mom-moms soon to be garden. They were covered in dirt. Soon after I got home, I turned from working mom to referee. Even though all five kids were participating in throwing dirt at one another, the play soon escalated and was no longer fun. Finally, Judah caught a dirt ball in the eye. A loud wail came from his mouth and he took off running for me. As soon as he got into my arms, he began blaming the guilty party. He continued to cry. I knew that he would be fine if I just disciplined the one who caused him pain. He wanted to know that I understood the pain he was going through and not only would I care for him, but also grant him the justice he felt he deserved. As soon as I told the other kids to stop throwing dirt and apologize to one another, Judah stopped crying. He ran back to the garden and resumed play.
Wow! I am learning so much about myself and my relationship with God from the behaviors of my 3 year old. How often have I felt wrongly hurt by someone else and wanted God to bring justice on the party who caused me the pain?
After 33 years of life, I have grown to realize that sometimes people may not agree with me or even like me. But, I still have a rather HOLY DISCONTENT when anyone questions my character. Having Godly character or integrity has always been incredibly important to me. As a teenager, I remember making decisions based on whether or not it would damage my character. I didn’t want to bring harm to my Ellison name. Not only would I hurt my character (name), but also negatively affect my entire family. To me, my character is priceless. Why would I ever sell it for such a cheap price?
Recently, I encountered a situation where I felt that some individuals were questioning my character. Although they were completely mislead and trying to cause division, the Lord gave me grace to lead through the discussion with love. However, when I got in the car to head home, my flesh wanted justice to be served. I wanted God to go forth on my behalf and speak to them in a burning bush experience. I wanted Him to tell them how wrong they were and that they needed to come back to me and apologize. (I am laughing at myself as I type this). Like Judah, I wanted God, my Father, to deliver me the justice that I thought I deserved.
The Youversion verse for today is Colossians 3:12 NIRV, “You are God’s chosen people. You are holy and dearly loved. So put on tender mercy and kindness as if they were your clothes. Don’t be proud. Be gentle and patient.” After reading this, I quickly realized that I didn’t need justiication in this situation because He knows my heart, He knows my thoughts, He knows my ways. And, I know the truth and the knowleadge of the truth sets me free. I just need to clothe myself, “put on,” mercy and kindness and cover that situation in love. Then, I can walk forward knowing that He knows me. I find rest in that!
For the other party, I pray God mends every hurt, heals scars of rejections, brings restoration, and blesses them to the fullest. I hope I have another opportunity to minister kindness, mercy, and love to them.
My 28 Thanks:
1. I can actually clothe myself in mercy and kindness each day.
2. I am one of God’s chosen people.
3. I am dearly loved.
4. Character is important to me.
5. I do my best to walk in love with other people even when I feel wronged.
6. God teaches me to pray for those who hurt me.
7. Judah teaches me things everyday.
8. I am still learning.
9. My brother-in-law, Eric, is doing well after an emergency apendectomy today.
10. We are able to help watch his twin 3 year old boys while he and Laci are at the hospital.
11. Judah had a blast playing with his cousins all day today.
12. The mud, grass, gravel, and film in the bath water tonight proved that it was a good day.
13. Got to have lunch with my friend, Angela. She is always a joy to be around.
14. Gary Jones and our outreach team at Crossroads have such a sweet heart for people.
15. Found puppets for our summer series, I think:)
16. Talked to two people today who have a call for Kids Ministry on their life and are stepping out to fulfill that calling.
17. The fire department started fill the boot today for MDA. So thankful for organizations committed to helping people and research to find cures.
18. Dustin was able to update my Mac today. It is running so much better.
19. Alysha said she would help out in our Rainbows class while my lead teacher is out for surgery.
20. I started recruitment for our summer sports camp today. Within 5 minutes, 10 people responded to my email wanting to help.
21. Judah asked me for, “snuggle mommy time.”
22. He loves when I wrap him up really tight in a bath robe and we pretend that he is a different character-superhero, king, or bible character.
23. Tonight, my nephew Ethan told me, “I love God.”
24. My friend, Amy, always brings wise counsel into my life. Very thankful for her sweet, wise spirit. She sends me scriptures all the time as an encouragement.
25. Pastor Ted gave me a good tip today when dealing with a situation that seems like conflict.
26. Found solutions to a few problems today.
27. I can see where God is working some things out on my behalf.
28. He goes before me, I need only to be still.