Toys Picked for Me

I am my parents’ 5th child and am the baby of the family. By the time I was 3 years old, my oldest sibling was of legal age. A few years later, my brother next in line was graduating high school so the majority of my childhood years at home were with my sister and my  other brother- the third son of the family.

We were tight-knit long ago, as we lived in the country and were around one another the majority of the time. My brother and I were actually babied by our older sister.

At the age of 4 years old, kindergarten wasn’t quite ready for me yet, but I was becoming bored at home. I remember wishing I could go to school like my siblings, Becky and Keith. I’m not sure if I expressed my feelings, or if it was just their good idea, but that year they started leaving toys out for me to play with during the day.

I remember a particular morning when I woke up and checked that special spot. They had a purple and white airplane laying out, among other things. I was so excited and felt so loved that they had taken the time out of their morning to hand-pick specific toys just for me! I remember thinking, “Wow! They really want me to play with this today!”

Although these were toys I had full access to on a daily basis, it was the thought that counted. Even after 30+ years, I can still feel how special and important that act made me feel. It also made me feel as if they were with me during the day.

The memories of those plans they had for me still bring a smile to my face and warmth to my heart.

They cared about me and wanted me to have fun and enjoy my day.

Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV says, “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”

Even when life doesn’t seem as joyful as having toys laid out for us to play with, our Father in Heaven has good plans for us. It doesn’t mean we won’t feel lonely at times or wish we were somewhere other than where we may be, but He thinks good things of us. He wants us to have a future and a hope, but that hope can only be found in Him.

When we walk with Him, He picks out our plans and lays them out specifically for us, just as my sister and brother laid out the toys they planned for me to play with each day.

What an act of love from our Father. He cares about our days and longs for His presence to be present in our lives. With Him, our future is far better than we could ever plan for ourselves.

I pray this will be a reminder of the hope we have in Him through Jesus Christ. Thank you for reading.

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How to Catch a Flea

A few weeks ago my niece came over and wanted me to paint her toenails. She was sitting on the floor in my bedroom and all of a sudden she said she got bit by something. She asked if we had fleas. I said, “I hope not!” She went on to tell me she read there is a trick you can do to find out if you have them.

You put a bowl of water under a lamp overnight. The fleas are drawn to the light from the lamp. They try to jump towards the light, fall in the bowl of water and drown. I said, “So if I put a bowl of water under the lamp on the piano, I’ll find out if I have fleas?” She said, “No, you have to put the lamp on the floor.”

I never tried this trick because four of us live here and none of us have gotten bit by anything except mosquitos, and that is outside unless one makes it’s way in occasionally. I think she just got lucky (haha), or maybe the Lord knew I’d need something to write about one day.

The other night Leah and I were reading in the book of Matthew. As I was reading aloud, I was reminded of the conversation my niece and I had. In verses 15-16 NKJV, Jesus says:

15) Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16) Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify you Father in heaven.

I glanced over at the lamp that was giving off the light to read by on the bedside table.

Although the trick with the lamp may be a good way to determine if you have fleas, we normally want to put a lamp in a higher place to be able to see better- to light up a room. This parable in the Bible speaks of followers of Christ. We don’t want to cover our light, place it on the floor or even have a dimmer switch, but let it shine bright to light up a dark world. He wants us to be a shining example for Christ, that our Father might be glorified.

Thank you for reading.