It was a perfect Sunday afternoon to sit on the patio in the shade with a cold drink and a good book. I could pause from my reading and enjoy the tufted titmice, the blue jays, the cardinals, the wrens, the orioles, the gold finches, the woodpeckers, the catbirds and the grosbeaks that were fluttering all around me. But that was the problem. They were fluttering and screaming at me to go away. For them I was the problem. How dare I invade their restaurant? I was intruding into their Eden. “Go away,” they were yelling. “Only come back long enough to bring more food. Then quickly go away again.”
How like us and God. We like to have Him around when our supplies are low. But once we are well stocked He is a nuisance. “Give us this day our daily bread and then get lost.” Often the only times people think about God is when troubles come and then often it is to blame Him. Generally speaking we are a selfish lot, when all God wants is for us to recognize the source of the good things He has given to us. In a way this makes God sound like a gratitude hog; however, there is no self in God. He doesn’t want our praise and gratitude for His sake. He knows that we need to keep in mind the origin of the good things in our lives lest we look to an empty and often dangerous source.
The first commandment, “Thou shall have no other Gods before me” isn’t about God. It is about us. To keep us from drinking from poisonous wells and eating from contaminated garbage pits. Everything He does is for us.
Written by Roger Bothwell on July 21, 2014
Spring of Life, PO Box 124, St. Helena, CA 94574