Ever sat back and watched your kids play and just be amazed at the simplicity of the things that are entertaining? My three year old son is obsessed with a shopkin (bc that’s a thing now?) and my older babies watch videos of other kids playing with shopkins? I don’t understand it.. but I do have a perspective on one of my childhood toys… the jack in the box. Wind and wind and wind and to no surprise- a man pops out when things get too tight. Life is our box, Jesus is our jack, and we’re still the idiot twisting the handle. Why do we wind ourselves this way? Circle after circle, almost methodically searching for a way to fix it, a way to improve our situation, our circles even… but in this toy, in this life we don’t get to decide when is “too tight”- we don’t get to choose when He pops out- not the jack or the Jesus. Maybe sometimes we’re so destructive with our choices that we speed up the process of His appearance, churning the handle- cranking error after error until He’s like hold up now girl, that’s enough… but I’d agrue that the more we seek to fix things ourselves- the tighter he allows us to spin the rope.
“Give us aid against the enemy, for human help is worthless” psalm 60:11
Y’all, the enemy is not that girl that started the rumor or that guy that broke your heart… the enemy is always, always Satan. Satan himself, not what (or who) Satan utilizes but him personally. Now when we fret over people, it’s just unwarranted. Do not be mad at the people or things that cause discord in your life- feel sorry for them- that they have let Satan manipulate what’s personal to them to in turn- attack what is person to you. I tell y’all over and over- the devil knows you.
Now.. back to this box. Tell me.. why do we have Jesus in a box to begin with? Carrying Him around dormant with a handle to spin every time we’re angry, or hurting, or just exhausted and just when we need Him to appear so He can deliver a smile. I had a moment this morning with the enemy, one of many this week. It wasn’t a big one but THE one that finally melted to tears and I told my husband “Baby, I’m just so tired. I just don’t understand some of these things and I don’t feel the comfort of His hand this week even though I know I’m in it.” He half smiled and said “Katie you know the Bible, you know Gods people, and you’ve even encouraged other people in these exact situations- this isn’t something you don’t know but I’ll remind you anyway.. Gods people have trials; they suffer. They always have, but just when Paul thought he couldn’t go anymore- God threw him a little nugget- just enough to remind him, Hey you see me? I’m here.” I looked at him with tears in my eyes and said Neal, you know I’m a hungry baby, I’m more of a ten piece kind of girl.. and we both smiled.
I’m learning in ministry that the same God I tell you about also lives with me. So why am I too, guilty of putting Jesus in a box? I’m just breaking pieces of my Jesus off and mailing off bites of Him to those of you that need that specific piece and then forgetting to check the mail myself. Those same pieces that I’ve shared with you- live in me- infinitely. I can mail and tell and share and send and my box is the same.. full… arguably fuller if that’s even a thing. So is yours. It’s so easy for us to tell the parents that lost their child everything happens for a reason, that person with cancer that it’s all in Gods timing, all in His hands, or to the struggling marriage there is purpose in your pain- there’s a reason for this struggle you are fighting. That’s good advice, right? That’s good enough isn’t it? Then why doesn’t it feel sufficient when the shoe is on the other foot? Maybe you’ve mailed off a lot of your pieces too? But you still have it. That gift is unfailing, unending, infinite, forever. Open your box. Don’t repeat the tedious cycle of twisting yourself to exhausted, waiting for the savior to pop out just before the handle breaks.. only to push Him back down until the next tragedy. Open the box- share what’s in there.. and always always remember this… His truths are always there.. for the friend who needs them.. and for you… and even me too.