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Smile 2

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Sometimes it take the smallest thing to make your heart smile.

Earlier this week, I was waiting in the foyer of my church for my son’s jr. high youth group to finish up.  Awana and a couple of Bible study groups are held on the same night. So, at the end of the night it’s not unusual for a small contingent of parents to be waiting in the foyer until all the groups are out.

When we saw the Awana kids file into the sanctuary for their closing, we all knew the wait was almost over. It had been silly string night, and because of this the little guys were all dressed up in Western wear. You could see they had a root-tooting good time shooting their teachers with Silly String until their teachers looked more like Cousin It from the Addams Family than anything else by the time it was all over.

So, we were waiting, making small talk, chit chatting, and waiting some more, when all of a sudden someone said, “the cubbies are singing, Oh, Happy Day.” At those words, all of the parents mobilized and rushed into the sanctuary to see the cubbies singing their hearts out on the stage complete with the song’s hand motions and cowboy hats perched precariously on their heads.

And, everyone else got in on the action too. Even if they didn’t know the hand motions, it’s hard to mess up the words, “Oh, happy day” was repeated with enough regularity to make anyone feel like they could join in.

In the few minutes those little cubbies sang that praise song to the Lord, and everyone else joined in, there was no one within earshot who didn’t have a smile on their face.

Take a listen to the song yourself.

After the song was over all the parents filed out to the foyer to wait some more, and even though we were in the same situation we were in before, you could just see that everyone was just a little more joyful.

It’s amazing what happens to your day when you look at the Lord and realize what He’s done for you because of His immense love for you. No matter where you are, what you’re doing or what you have to contend with, you can say, ‘it’s a happy day because You, Lord, are with me.’

“And Nehemiah continued, “Go and celebrate with a feast of rich foods and sweet drinks, and share gifts of food with people who have nothing prepared. This is a sacred day before our Lord. Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the LORD is your strength!'”

Nehemiah 8:10

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Raw cookie dough in cookie clumps.

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The other day, I was listening to the radio and Brian “Head” Welch was being interviewed. Now this guy, who was the guitarist and founding member of the band KoRn, has sort of an amazing conversion story. It’s one of those that we all love to hear because it shows the power of God, and how if it suits His purposes, He is fully capable of coming down and just BOOM, grabbing someone.

On thing that really struck me while I was listening to the interview was when Welch said that he found Christ and His love irresistible. Even though this guy’s story is amazing, and he’s written about it in “Save Me From Myself” and a devotional, “Stronger, Forty Days of Metal and Spirituality”, it was the word irresistible that really caught me.

How many of us can say that it was Christ’s irresistibility that caught us? Many of may say, out of habit, that God loves us, that He gave His life for us or that we love Him, but how many of us have experienced the love of God in such a way that we would categorize it as irresistible?

When someone says ‘irresistible’ I’m always reminded of my son when he was 5-years old and in kindergarten. He went to a school where it was just a half-day kindergarten, so, he was always home for lunch.

My son is an unapologetic lover of desserts. Many years ago, he informed me that not only was there dinner dessert, but there was breakfast dessert and lunch dessert too. The breakfast dessert I put my foot down about, but, every once in a while, I would give him a little lunch dessert especially after he had come home from a long day of  learning in kindergarten.

All of us have that one dessert that we just love, and for my son it’s cookie dough. Now, I know that you’re not supposed to give your children cookie dough because of the raw eggs and the fact that the experts say it could possibly kill them. But, since I’m not really one to listen to the experts, and since my son just adores the stuff, I’ve always gone by the motto ‘everything in moderation’ and have moderately indulged his love of it.

So, this one day I decided that lunch dessert was in order. In an effort to stream line things, I put his lunch down in front of him and off to the side on a separate plate, I put two little squares of chocolate chip cookie dough. These were accompanied with strict instructions that he needed to eat his lunch first and his dessert second. It wasn’t even a minute later that he moved from one end of the table to the other, taking his lunch plate with him, and leaving his dessert behind.

I immediately told him that moving around the table during a meal was rude, and he needed to go back to his original seat.

“I can’t go back there,” he said.

“Why not?” I answered looking from one end of the table to the other and not seeing what the problem could possibly be.

“It’s  too tempting,” he replied. “I’m trying not to be tempted by the cookie dough. So, I moved.”

I tried not to smile because he was so earnest in his desire not to give into the temptation of the cookie dough. Rather than get into trouble for eating it first, he moved so far way from it that it wouldn’t interfere with what he was told he needed to do first.

Because he loved the cookie dough more than anything else, it was irresistible to him.

Draws a picture of what irresistible is, doesn’t it?

When I heard Brian “Head” Welch describe Christ and His love as irresistible, then thought of my son and the cookie dough, it made me wonder about how many of us see God that way, as irresistible. To fall that deeply for someone, to allow ourselves to come to that point where we realize that we need to let go of everything else because there is nothing more important than being with that person we find irresistible, can be a frightening place to be, especially if we think there are other things that come before it.

Yet, it seems to me that we could make things a lot easier for ourselves if we just stopped fighting Him and the irresistible love He has for us, turned around and not only admitted that He is irresistible, but that there is nothing that is more important than He is.

“God, your faithful love is so valuable that people take refuge in the shadow of your wings. They are filled from the abundance of Your house. You let them drink from Your refreshing stream, for with You is life’s fountain. In Your light we will see the light”

Psalm 36:7-9




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