Funny, isn’t it? How the God of eternity keeps trying to connect with humanity? God wants to be in a relationship with us, but we have difficulty accepting signs of God’s presence and provision.
The Egyptians would not believe the signs. The Israelites despised God and all the signs God sent (Numbers 14:11). The folks who heard about signs from Jeremiah and Daniel floundered in unfaithfulness.
Sure, it would be amazing to witness angels, a babe in a manger, or see water turned into wine! I simply need to “lift up mine eyes” from my phone or TV to see signs – the God nods – pointing me to Christ and his covenant community:
The hymn my soul is singing before I wake up; the birds that face east, heralding the dawn; the coincidental conversation with a stranger who “happens” to affirm my call; or the softening of hearts when there is no chance of common ground.
God, there is undeniable holiness in the Advent season. As we turn our attention toward what you are doing, help us make room for Jesus in our hearts. Help us shift busy-ness into blessedness and weariness into welcome. Thank you for sending us sacred signs pointing us to Your Son. Amen.
Katy Brugraber — Chambersburg, PA
A man was asked to paint a boat. He brought his paint and brushes and began to paint the boat a bright red, as the owner asked him.
While painting, he noticed a small hole in the hull, and quietly repaired it.
When he finished painting, he received his money and left.
The next day, the owner of the boat came to the painter and presented him with a nice check, much higher than the payment for painting.
The painter was surprised and said “You’ve already paid me for painting the boat Sir!”
“But this is not for the paint job. It’s for repairing the hole in the boat.”
“Ah! But it was such a small service… certainly it’s not worth paying me such a high amount for something so insignificant.”
“My dear friend, you do not understand. Let me tell you what happened:
“When I asked you to paint the boat, I forgot to mention the hole.
“When the boat dried, my kids took the boat and went on a fishing trip.
“They did not know that there was a hole. I was not at home at that time.
“When I returned and noticed they had taken the boat, I was desperate because I remembered that the boat had a hole.
“Imagine my relief and joy when I saw them returning from fishing.
“Then, I examined the boat and found that you had repaired the hole!
“You see, now, what you did? You saved the life of my children! I do not have enough money to pay your ‘small’ good deed.”
So no matter who, when or how, continue to help, sustain, wipe tears, listen attentively, and carefully repair all the ‘leaks’ you find. You never know when one is in need of us, or when God holds a pleasant surprise for us to be helpful and important to someone.
Along the way, you may have repaired numerous ‘boat holes’ for several people without realizing how many lives you’ve save.
Make a difference…