Lately, you’ve been in the habit of having a great day right up until about an hour before I get home. Your mother loves you and I know she takes care of you. What I don’t know is why you become The Monster every evening around 4:30pm.
In the past we’ve been quick to comfort you when you cry. We pick you up, play with you, even give you snacks in an attempt to calm you. But, you’re 10 months old now. Maybe we should have started sooner but we decided a few days ago not to pick you up or drop whatever we’re doing every time you cry.
We’re not ignoring you. We haven’t abandoned you. We just want you to learn to come to us for the things you need.
Tonight, for example, it was time for you to have your last bottle before bed. The routine used to be you start crying, we make a bottle, and then we feed you. We still make your bottle but you’ve learned to feed yourself. So tonight, as we’ve done every night for the last few weeks, mom made your bottle and put it on the ground near the couch, trying to coax you away from the kitchen while I did dishes.
But you wouldn’t go to her. You sat at my feet and cried. After 30 seconds you began screaming. “Come here, Lewis,” your mom said. “Come get your bottle.” You just kept screaming. “I know he’s hungry,” she told me as I continued doing the dishes. “He knows what his bottle is. He knows it’s what he wants.”
“Then give it to him,” I said, annoyed by your screaming.
“No,” your mom said. “He needs to learn to obey us. I made his bottle, and all he has to do is come to me and then I’ll give it to him.”
My annoyance faded. I smiled and shook my head.
“What?” she asked.
“I love you. I’ll tell you when I’m done with the dishes.”
Lewis, what made me smile and shake my head is that I do the same thing to God that you did to your mom. There are times when I know God has something for me, I sense Him calling me to something, or feel He’s put a desire in my heart. I know, from past experiences, He’s ready and waiting to satisfy that longing. I know He’s lovingly and perfectly prepared everything for me.
But I also know He requires something of me. He requires one simple, yet difficult thing for prideful people like me: He requires that I go to Him.
And, what do I do? Everything but go to Him. Then I whine and complain that I’m not happy, that life isn’t going my way, and that He’s dropping the ball. I yell at Him: “Why won’t you give me (fill in the blank); the desire YOU put in me!?!”
Meanwhile, He’s sitting there, waiting for me to simply come to Him. He’s waiting to give me everything I need if I will just come to Him. He’s calling me, cheering me on, patiently trying to teach me to come to Him.
I love you, Lewis. Thank you for reminding me that while God is always there for me, it’s up to me to go to Him.
Are you as foolish as me? Does your pride keep you from going to God for the things you need?
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