I just love my small little town. After dropping Compassion off at the High School and dropping Joy off at the Middle School, Hope and I marveled at God’s painted lake this morning. The lake was still as glass around the edges, with the exception of the area the swans inhabit. The young swans, still cloaked in their grayish white feathers, bobbed their heads under the mirror and caused a circular current to form. My eyes followed the current to the area where the glass stopped and the bubbling started. I wondered if that is the area where the springs burst open from the bottom of the lake. This expanse of the lake was spectacular with patches of elegant fog dancing towards God’s breathtaking sunrise. I felt as if I was watching angels dancing on the lake top. Was Jesus with them? As my gaze wandered up I saw the cotton candy striped wispy clouds kissed pink by the sunrise. I wish Monet was there to capture the moment for eternity.
God places within each of us gifts which we can nurture or neglect. If we listen to God and His whispers we will find that passion and develop it into something exquisite. You know how we blow kisses to our children as we wave them goodbye? I often imagine God upstairs in Heaven, looking down and blowing those gifts off His hand and into our spirits. Then He watches to see if we will cultivate our talents. As we dance more, paint more, run more or sing more, God will blow a measure more down to us. I think this makes Him proud. Just as we are proud when we see all A’s on a child’s report card or the winning goal scored, God glorifies in our victories with us. Our spirits smile, our souls seem complete and we strive for more of the exaltation we feel at our accomplishments.
There is a difference of striving to be like the Joneses and striving to be like Jesus. When we compete with others, we never have enough. We want more toys, more shoes, and designer’s names on everything. We never feel complete. We want more, more, more! Selfishness and displeasure permeates our souls and we feel inferior. But there is a better option available for a successful life. Forget about comparisons, forget about Coach and Calvin, and focus on God and Jesus and the Holy Spirit that lives within you.
When you follow the angels dancing on the waters and your gaze rises up towards the pretty pink sky you are looking at pure, simple, perfection. God carries your name in His book. Your name is priceless. You are irreplaceable. God doesn’t compare you or judge you by your attire and your accessories. He smiles when you dance more and sing louder.
So as you go to the mall this season to purchase items for under your tree, look for those irreplaceable gifts that foster those talents for those on your list. Look for the watercolors, look for the pigskin, and look for the tap shoes or put together a scrapbook of memories and quotes that have enlightened your life. The gifts from the heart are the gifts that make our ultimate designer delighted. The gifts that come from the heart are the gifts of substance. Jesus smiles at these gifts because to Him its the same as placing Frankincense, Gold, and Myrrh at the foot of His manger.