Friday, February 1, 2013

More Than a Wildflower ~ Life Lessons from Hand-Me-Downs

I have a lot of nieces. That has translated to having a lot of clothes passed down.

And I do mean a lot. Three of my nieces are near the same size, so when they out grow those clothes, they filter down to my kids. That's three wardrobes worth of clothes. Believe me - it's a bit overwhelming, but it's a wonderful problem to have to figure what to do with all those clothes. I haven't had to buy much.

As my oldest child grows, the hand-me-downs become a little less. When kids get older they actually wear out some of their clothes, so there's less to pass down.

I had to go buy a pair of jeans the other day because several of the previously-loved pairs chose to become trendy and rip holes in the knees, thereby relegating themselves to the play-clothes drawer. As I bought the jeans, it occurred to me that when we moved up the next size, I was going to have to buy more jeans. There weren't many in the box in the closet.

Having to plan on buying more jeans meant having to plan for an adjustment in the budget for kids clothes. Right now, our budget is tight (who's isn't?) so that wasn't a happy thought.

But you know what is a happy thought? My God loves me.

Field of Wildflowers and a sunset
San Carlos Wildflowers, via Wikimedia Commons
I posted a few weeks ago about realizing the connection between the verses Jesus spoke about God caring for the sparrows and the verses about seeking first the Kingdom of God. That connection floored me and adjusted my thinking and prayer life since.

And God came through.

I'll be honest, it didn't occur to me to start praying for jeans when she's still several months from needing that next size. There were problems that seemed much closer that needed my prayer and focus more than my daughter's wardrobe.

But God is so big that He can hear me on all of those looming issues and still take care of the little ones that I've forgotten.

Romans 8:26 says, "In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express."

I've always considered this passage as dealing with more spiritual things. Like when we don't realize what we really need to pray for is boldness or humility or something like that. But I think now that the Spirit also prays for jeans. Or a sunny day. Or a flat tire so that you miss getting caught in that big pile up on the way to work. He knows exactly what we need in our lives even when we forget or don't know in the first place.

We have a friend at church that occasionally gives us dresses her granddaughter has outgrown. Last week she gave us a huge box of clothes. Inside were six pairs of jeans in the exact size my daughter will need next. It's not a size that is all that easy to find either.

I am humbled by this tangible example of Jesus' promise in Luke 12:22-34. As my family has made a very conscious effort lately to seek more of the Kingdom of God, He has seen our need before it even arrives and He has provided. He has demonstrated that He loves me more than the wildflowers. And when it comes time to put those jeans in the drawer, I will remember His provision and tear up all over again.

God loves us. More than we can ever know. He loves you. Run to Him. Seek His kingdom and His righteousness and you will not be disappointed. He doesn't promise everyone a big box of hand-me-downs. Your miracle will look different than mine. But never fear, He will show up with exactly what you need, even if you don't know what that something is.

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