First thing Wednesday morning, Olivia got into her head that she wanted ice cream. Desperately.
I got out of the shower to the kids running into my room yelling, “We have a surprise for you!” I followed them to the kitchen to discover that they had swept and mopped the foyer and the kitchen. I was so proud!
But I was curious about the ice cream bucket on the counter. Olivia was hovering around it and acting as if she was going to open it.
“I want to give you some ice cream,” she said. “That’s your other surprise.”
On the one hand, I didn’t want to scorn the gift or the giver, but on the other hand the ice cream wasn’t hers to give; and I knew that she only wanted to give it to me because she wanted some, too; and it was not even 9:00 in the morning yet! So, I told her that we needed to wait on the ice cream, but that if she would trust me and not be continually bugging me about it, I’d let her dish up some ice cream for everyone when it was snack time.
The “trust me” and “don’t bug me” parts didn’t compute, apparently. About an hour and a half later, she was asking again if it was time to dish up ice cream. Not yet! Then, right after lunch we were gathered around my computer talking to Mom over Skype and Olivia started asking again about the ice cream. No, it’s not snack time! Grrr….
About an hour later, I walked into the kitchen to find her pulling large bowls out of the cabinet – bowls that we never have ice cream in because of their size. She was just getting them ready.
At that point I told her that because she didn’t trust me about the ice cream she wasn’t going to get to dish it up. I would be dishing it up instead. And, if she continued bugging me, she would also lose the privilege of having the ice cream herself.
As soon as the words left my mouth, I was convicted.
“Lord, I want to glorify You through the issue with our house in Horn Lake. But, meanwhile, I need the mortgage payment to come through.”
Trust Me. I will give you everything you need.
Hmmm…I wonder where we can finagle the money to do the necessary repairs.
Trust Me. I will provide.
I need to put in a plug here and there to see who wants to buy the house.
Trust Me. I have a plan to prosper you, not to harm you.
And yet I continue to try to scheme. What if He doesn’t remember? What if He’s too late? What if He wants to glorify Himself in ways I don’t like? Maybe I should help Him. Remind Him. Step in and take care of a few things myself.
My heavenly Father is much more patient with me than I am with Olivia. And He’s much more trustworthy as my Father than I am as her mother. Yet, I expect more from her as my daughter than I am wiling to give as God’s daughter.
Once I worked through all of those thoughts, I went and had a conversation with Olivia. I explained why her actions were bothersome. I shared with her that sometimes I do the same thing to God. And then, when snack time rolled around, I let her help me serve the ice cream (in smaller bowls, of course!).
Oh, and just for the record – God did something He doesn’t normally do in our lives. He covered the mortgage payment in advance! Two weeks early, in fact! We don’t know how He did it because it doesn’t mathematically compute that we should have been able to pay it and pay everything else. But He did. Maybe when He said “Trust me,” He really did know what He was talking about!