I’ve heard it said not to envy one another’s gifts, because in doing so we fail to honor God’s will and purpose in the gifts specifically chosen for us. We spend so much time admiring the way another “swims” , the colors of their feathers, or ability to support themselves that we neglect to see the plan that God has for us.What are your gifts? Are you prepared to receive them?
Currently, Just Another Duck On The Water
Currently, I have been giving a lot of thought to our perceptions of one another. You know those, more often than not, erroneous conceptions that someone we know has it all together. That pedestal was never meant to be, and distances us from the intimacy of real friendship. It also leaves us in a state of always wanting that perceived perfection rather than seeking to examine and appreciating the good in our own lives. So, with that, let me introduce myself as…just another duck on the water.
To borrow one of my favorite lines from the movie The Replacements, “Like a duck on the pond. On the surface everything looks calm, but beneath the water those little feet are churning a mile a minute”.
Staying afloat isn’t a result of its feet paddling, though, for that just propels the duck along. Its body itself, in shape and buoyancy, is a gift from God that as intended helps it achieve that course so easily. Yet, without the time spent preparing its feathers, moving oil from tail to front, it wouldn’t be the watertight vessel you see before you. This preparation is needed for us as well not only to weather the waves, but merely to stay afloat. What is it that helps you to remain atop the water line, and to have that sense of peace in gazing upon the horizon before you? For me, quite simply it is time spent with Christ- in prayer, in Word, in song and with others in communion. That’s it, that is my oil on my feathers.
Watching: Yesterday, just studying on the waves and the tide rolling in, I was overwhelmed by the greatness of our God. Turning to see my husband and boys throwing a football to one another, I was given a glimpse of that same greatness in the small joys of the moment. So too, as the small little bank of sand that we were on suddenly began to disappear, we were reminded of God’s perfect timing!
Drinking: The new Pumpkin Spice Chai Latte, and yes, there is such a heavenly creation here on earth! Fall is here, and so are the Pumpkin Lattes..I did say I love coffee right? While, as a mom I am a pro at cutting corners and finding sales, this is such a treat for me. Not to mention, when combined with a great conversation with a friend, it is truly priceless.
Listening: not to the voices of discouragement, anxiety, fear or gossip. Instead, I am seeking to hear my father’s voice that leads, strengthens, comforts, and enlightens me. There’s a children’s book, by Max Lucado, entitled “You are Special” that comes to mind that speaks to this very subject. When we sit before our Creator, and Father we are told how perfectly made we are. It is then, that we begin to see how little the opinions of the world, be they good or bad, really matter.
At the movies: “When the Game Stands Tall”, is the story of the high school De La Salle Spartan football team who struggle to find out who they really are when the winning streak they had enjoyed suddenly stops. Coach Bob Ladouceur, played by Jim Caviezel, experiences a heart attack, which for a time sidelines him. He is then reminded how important the connection with his family is too. In the midst of their angst they finally learn that winning isn’t as essential as effort, and the bond that they have with one other. Putting the notion of self below that of team, and God above everything is not an easy concept for most young athletes planning for college scouts and potentially the pros. Add in the opinions of family, neighbors, and media, and the pressure is seemingly insurmountable. As a woman who loves football, and her faith –this movie handled both splendidly! How awesome is it to catch yourself saying the “Our Father” along with a movie?!