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by | Aug 19, 2010

“Mommy, can I have toast with jam?”

Wide-eyed and hopeful, three year-old Grace looked expectantly at her mom, who was cooking breakfast on the stove.  Grace’s mom, my cousin Heather, kept stirring as she responded gently, “No, Gracie.  Not today.  Today we’re having oatmeal.  You can have toast with jam another day.”

Her lower lip began to tremble as Grace looked across the small kitchen table at her grandpa, who was spreading strawberry preserves on a slice of whole-wheat bread.  The injustice of it all was more than her little heart could take. “But Grandpa has toast with jam!  I want toast with jam!”

Turning from the stove to face her daughter, Heather repeated firmly but lovingly, “I know you want toast with jam.  But today you’re having oatmeal.  If you’re going to cry, you need to go into the living room.  When you’re done crying, come back and have your oatmeal.”

Strawberry-blonde curls shaking with her sobs, Grace ran from the kitchen and stood in the middle of the living room, wailing pitifully for everyone to hear, “I’m crying about my toast with jam!”

When We Want Toast Instead of Oatmeal

Sometimes I feel a lot like Grace.  Recently I was whining to a friend of mine about a girl who just got engaged.  “She’s much younger than I am – I used to babysit her!  Why is SHE getting married, when I’m still single?  It’s not fair!

Suddenly I had an image of me pouting in self-pity just like my cousin’s 3-year-old daughter – “I’m crying about my singleness!”

I could picture my heavenly Father smiling at me patiently.  “When you’ve finished crying about it, come back to Me and accept what I’ve given you for right now.”

What’s your “toast with jam”? Is it a job?  A relationship?  An illness?  Financial difficulties?  Something you’ve prayed for but haven’t received?  Pour out your complaint to the Lord, then submit to Him and receive what He has for you.  Today it may be oatmeal.  Tomorrow it may be toast with jam.  But we can trust Him, because He knows what’s best for us.

Psalm 142:1-3 “I cry aloud to the LORD…  I pour out my complaint before Him; before Him I tell my trouble.  When my spirit grows faint within me, it is You who know my way.”

Going Vertical!


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