It seems that lately I prefer things that are laying within childrens’ reach to be without many moving parts. Moving parts tend to get dismantled by the rather inquisitive little fingers of my children.
This past week I entered my bedroom and was greeted with a rather Gabriel-esque proclamation from my 5 year old, Daniel. An open lid glass jar filled with pennies lay on the floor. Instantly, that jar represented only one thing to me: a prophecy not yet fulfilled in the form of coins spewed everywhere.
“Rachel broke the lid to the penny jar, Dad. You need to fix it.”
Having just arrived home from a long work day, it was just about the time to help round up the herd for the night. I was hungry, tired and a bit irritated we missed a deadline at work… and someone emailed me asking prayer for a nephew with terminal cancer. That was on my mind a teeny bit as well…
So… the timing for this “issue” was not necessarily bad.. I mean if ya think about it, when is it ever really inopportune to divert your time in order to fix an unexpected problem one had no intention of investing energies into? On top if that, is it really such a “bad thing” to attempt to fix something that makes me feel as though I just got a haircut and haven’t showered yet? I mean, is clawing my eyes out really such a bad idea? This form of stress relief is a good thing, right? Who needs eyesight?
So here I am, jar lid in hand, trying to envision how all these “extraneous” parts are to be utilized. Do I really need a penny jar? Will my 3 year old, Rachel.. really miss it? Why did man invent the penny anyway…? May the Lord call that person to task on the great day of Reckoning.. yes I shall pray for that poor soul…
After several minutes I decided my self-worth, and humbly I must confess, Rachel’s pleasure in this penny jar, was not in any way being called upon to determine the future outcome of this problem, and I announced defeat. Daniel, thumb in mouth, with what seemed like a very casual demeanor while lying on my bed, was watching me silently the whole time.
“I can’t fix this Daniel. It’s broken. I need to throw all this out. “
I got off the floor and began to wash my hands. Thumb still in mouth, Daniel called out in a muffled voice.
“Dad, I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
Look at that. My son learned a scripture verse. He is letting me know he memorized something. How sweet. I was so frustrated and wanting to just settle the kids in bed, I had made no connection as to why he was telling me this… at all.
“That’s right Daniel!!” I proclaimed. “That’s in Philippians… Chapter 4…. I think.”
“Philippians 4:13, Dad. So what you just said is a lie.”
I didn’t lie, Daniel. It is time to go to bed. I never lie.. Ever. You know that.”
At this point, Daniel popped his thumb out of his mouth, which I knew meant business of some sorts.
“Dad, you just said you cannot fix that jar. That is a lie.”
Completely blind-sided to the build up of my son’s declaration, I had nothing to say except confess I was wrong. I then admitted aloud my sin to the Lord in front of Daniel. Before leaving the room I declared to him, “Daniel.. I will fix this tomorrow. Thank you.”
And so it goes… that from the mouths of children His truth will be proclaimed.
In a similar fashion, God is raising up those who will bring fresh insight and offer truth and encouragement to the body. If those who are supposed to be the ones speaking truth and wisdom are not in alignment with The Lord’s word.. He will speak it through someone else. The Lord used my son to remind me of an invaluable principle:
We must never allow circumstances to lead us into contending with God’s truth.
This is never more true in this hour than for those who are our elders within the body.
“Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants, You have ordained strength,” (Psalm 8:2)