Monday, August 31, 2009

A Gentle (Much-Needed) Reminder

"I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you." Matthew 17:20

So, I have to believe that the Lord knew what was going to happen today. I opened my email this morning and saw my daily devotional email that I subscribe to. I don't know why I didn't read it. I just didn't. I had a decent morning, uneventful. And then IT happened. I won't go into detail about what went wrong but there was crying, lots of crying, involved. I just didn't know what to do. There is no quick, easy solution. There is no long, drawn-out solution. There is truly no solution that my eyes can see. I berated myself," God has been more than faithful, why can't you trust Him now? Why do you have no faith?" I wept and tried to pray, hoping that a magical (or more providential) answer would magically appear. I knew it was a little too early to hope for something like that, but still....

I pulled myself together and went about my tasks. It wasn't like it was life-threatening, there was no death involved. However, I just sometimes want things taken care of quickly. I wanted an immediate answer to prove that I did indeed have faith. Or, maybe I just wanted a fast response to prove that I indeed have no patience! Whatever the case may be, I was definitely distraught that I was not hunky-dory with the situation. Then I read the devotional in my mailbox that I definitely should have read first thing this morning. (You can find it here :

The author talks about birds in her mustard tree. Her mustard tree is her faith. "Birds" are little ways that she is reminded that she has faith and that God, of course, is always faithful. You can't have birds in a tree that doesn't exist. I guess I don't fully understand it, but I certainly realized one thing. There are plenty of areas in my life that I have exhibited faith. God isn't some stressed-out parent that is going to start yelling, "You never believe Me, why can't you remember everything I have done for you?!" at the first sign of my weakness. He instead is the perfect Father, reminding me gently of every blessing He has given me. But more importantly, today He chose to remind me of all the times I have been faithful. Every scary unknown where I have walked with Him instead of trying to see things on my own. All those memorial stones that He has set up for me to show me the times that I have relied on Him and not my own strength. What a precious thing! I fully expected a firm reprimand at the least. I had spent more than a few minutes wallowing in self-pity (ask my sister, I dragged her into my mud!) I didn't deserve to hear Him singing my praises. But I did.

I am so glad that I serve a God who doesn't give up on me. He doesn't get mad at me for dragging my feet for a few minutes. He knew that instead of bringing up all my failures I would be much more benefitted by being reminded of my successes. I know that I have a mustard tree of faith, and there are more than a few birds in it if I just take the time to look and listen. He doesn't expect perfection. Thanks, God!


  1. Maybe we need to revamp the quote "stop and smell the roses" to "stop and count the birdies." Amazing, the patience God has with us. I know how frustrated I get with my own human inadequacies, imagine what it's like for God?! And yet, He extends grace, every time! Blessings to you my sweet Clare :)

  2. Clare,
    Congratulations!You are the winner of Birds in My Mustard Tree. Please email me your mailing address.

    Sweet Blessings,

  3. Hi hon! Yes Omaha was great fun. Lots to do with or without kiddos. From the KC perspective I'd heard for ages it's a great mini-vacation spot esp since it's only 2 1/2 hrs away and all. Would definitely recommend the B&B and they have all sorts of touristy information there for ya to check things out. I'm sure you and Joel could definitely use some alone-together-time soon!



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