Monday, February 23, 2009

vanity plates and a good hard look at one's heart...

Taking a look at ourselves... it's sometimes NOT a pretty thing. I had one of those moments this morning. I was driving to work, and at a stop light, I noticed the license plate of the car in front of me. It was a vanity plate. It didn't really matter WHAT it said (though it said DVAFIED, which was rather apropos). My problem started with the fact that it WAS a vanity plate.

(Actually, my problem didn't start with that. My problem started way down deep inside; the plate was just a catalyst causing my problem to surface!)

In my head, I heard myself say, "Sheesh. I can't even AFFORD vanity plates." Then, I REALLY heard what I had said, "God, You don't provide very well for me. I can't have good stuff like what everyone else has."

I'd like to say I was shocked by the voice in my head. But I wasn't.

I'd like to say I didn't mean it. But I did.

I'd like to say I'm better than that, more grateful. But I'm not.

What I was, however, was convicted. As soon as I really heard the comment in my head, I knew what I was saying. It was quickly followed by, "Wow, God. Thanks for the manna and the quail, but what I'd really like is something different, something better." Because, at that moment, not one thing was separating me from the Israelites in the desert --grumbling and complaining and whining about what they didn't have while God was providing miraculously every step of the way!

I immediately confessed and apologized to God-- Jehovah Jireh, my Provider-- and asked for His forgiveness for my ungrateful heart and ungracious thoughts. And I began to thank Him for all that He has provided for me, for the many, many ways He shows me His love, for giving me Jesus when I'm complaining about not having vanity plates.

For what more could one ask?

What greater gift could ever be given?

Lord, I ask that you would give me a grateful heart...
and that I would always treasure You above the vanities of this world.

(Dr Freud and the Self-Aware Chicken appear courtesy of Doug Savage; used by artist's permission)

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