Do You Do This, Too?

“Do everything without grumbling or arguing.”
~Phillipians 2:14

“This stinks,” I muttered under my breath. A situation with a friend was bugging me. A lot. “Why can’t people get their act together, God? I asked in a rather testy voice. I spent the better portion of the morning complaining to God about the situation. He got fed up with it right around lunch time.

“Stop it!” He demanded. “Stop complaining!” His voice was unusually loud.

“But my friend…” I didn’t get to finish my sentence before God cut me off.

“When you complain, you’re telling me I am not doing things right,” He said. “Don’t tell me how to be God.”

“You’re right. I’m sorry.” I offered my apology. “If you are in charge, I guess I don’t have any room to complain, do I?”

“Spend your mental energy on giving thanks, instead of grumbling,” He suggested. His voice had softened and for that, I was grateful!

“Yes, God. I’ll do that,” I answered. For the rest of the day, every time I wanted to complain about my friend, I gave thanks for my friend instead. By the end of the day, I was at peace. I felt love for my friend again. I went to sleep with the promise to wake the next morning with praise and thanksgiving for all things. I promised to not complain to God, to myself, or to others. I’m challenging myself to remember that God doesn’t make mistakes.

He Will Love You Anyway

Love keeps no record of wrongs.
~1 Corinthians 13:5

The wind lashed at my umbrella as I leaned into the force of the gale, determined to complete my morning walk in spite of Mother Nature’s wrath. When I turned the farthermost corner of my journey, I walked past a church. A young choir inside sang, their voices spilling out onto the sidewalk. I stopped and listened, forgetting the weather. Their voices filled my heart with such sweet innocence, that I was transported back in time–before the hurt, before the shame, before my hardened heart.

My heart ached for all the paths I’ve wandered that took me away from God, away from my goodness. I shivered standing there in the rain.

“I have loved you anyway,” God whispered as the tears I was fighting won and chased my regrets down my face.

“What?” I asked, raising my face to the rain.

“I knew you’d break my heart, but I loved you anyway,” God said gently.

“Oh God, how could you?” I could barely get the words out.

“I created you. You’re mine. How can I not love my creation?” He answered.

“I’m so sorry for all of my mistakes. I’m so sorry I lost my way so many years ago.”

“I know you are. I’ve forgotten all about those years. I wish you could forget them too. Tell the others that even though I know they too will break my heart, I love them anyway,” God asked.

“Yes, of course, I will,”  I answered.

Here is that message: God wants you to know that He isn’t a keeper of wrongs. He loves you, even when He knows you’ll break His heart. You are still His precious innocent child. No matter how far down the wrong path you have journeyed, you can always turn around and come home, back to His arms, back to His heart.

I dried my tears and pushed on, each step propelling me towards home. I savored the company that I was now aware was walking with me—had always walked with me. “Thank you, God,” I whispered, full of gratitude for a love I can only appreciate, never fully fathom.

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