Monthly Archives: December 2014

Uncle Richard

I just finished reading “Christian History and Biography” (issue 89) from Winter 2006. The entire issue was about a distant relative of mine: Richard Baxter and the English Puritans. (He is my great-uncle with a lot of greats added on the front of that title. )
Amazing! I admire so much of their faith, their desire to live completely for God, and their attention to the Word, that is the Bible. My big problems are two: the seeming hatred towards those they disagreed with and the arrogance some seemed to have.

I want to do some more in depth reading of course; a magazine can only expose your mind and spirit to the most basic beliefs and history. One of my burning questions is why would they only sing the Psalms? Why not worship Jesus in their services with their singing? I’m sure there will be a load of more questions before I finish!

Anyone know a top notch overview? I’m sticking to the English Puritans for now, because I partly want to know more about “Uncle” Richard Baxter.

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10807874_970886759595242_690679972_n“If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me. I will be found by you,” says the Lord.    —Jeremiah 29:13-14 (NLT)

   Our granddaughter has been in a foster home this past year. Neither our daughter nor her husband are able to provide the home she needs, so she’s been a foster child. As grandparents we have repeatedly tried to make ourselves available to care for her, but whenever you try to work with the legal system it usually takes a while to make progress. Early last month, at the conclusion of a three-hour court hearing, the judge decided that the most appropriate placement for our granddaughter would be with us. So all of the sudden my wife and I are parenting a toddler.

I’ve been reminded again of a few things I had forgotten since the last toddler in our home.

  • ¨ Toddlers eat everything, yet never gain much weight. (They graze: a tiny bit now & more later…)
  • ¨ Even though toddlers graze, they do it consistently, so they have enormous amounts of energy. (I eat larger amounts all at once and have gained more weight and have less energy. Hmmm….)
  • ¨ Toddlers learn more by watching what we do, than by being lectured on what to do. (Turns out most of us learn better that way… so why are most of our Sunday school classes lectures?)
  • ¨ Toddlers keep going until they need a nap. (I’m on board with this one!)
  • ¨ Toddlers want to keep going even after they really do need to sleep. (How many of us put off sleep until one more show is off, or one more chapter is read, or one more post is written?)
  • ¨ Toddlers are grumpy when they need food or sleep (or a change). (Maybe that’s the problem some of us old grumpy people have too??)
  • ¨ Toddlers love to play pretend… with dolls, cars, houses, and remotes. (Our toys and games are bigger and more expensive, but we still love to play and pretend… Even if it’s that we pretend we’re more important than everybody else!)
  • ¨ Toddlers think they’re the only ones that need attention. (Some things never seem to change…)

I could probably learn a few things from our granddaughter (if I had enough energy!). But one thing I DO know, is I have reconnected with an old game, “Peek-a-Boo.” She loves playing it, and I LOVE seeing her smile and hearing her laugh. There’s no danger in me not knowing where she went… and she has no fear of not knowing where I am. But we play. We pretend to not see each other. And so we look. And PEEK-A-BOO, there we are!

So many of us do the same thing with God. We pretend He can’t see us, and we try to do our own thing and play like we don’t know where He is. But just like that Scripture from Jeremiah says, as soon as we look for Him, He makes sure that we WILL find Him!

As Fall turns into Winter, and Thanksgiving gives way to Advent and then to Christmas, let’s remember the lesson of the Toddler’s Peek-a-boo game. Even when we feel far from God, and can’t figure out which way to go next, as soon as we begin to seek God, we WILL find Him. He’ll make sure of it!

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