Thursday, April 24, 2014

All is Redeemed {Lessons and Lunchables}

Ever get pity chips? Not the knowing nod of a veteran parent, bestowing on you some metaphorical badge of honor in the presence of a screaming toddler. I'm talking actual chips. Tortilla chips.

It started with a lunchable. My preschooler earned it by her "good" behavior (we all know the term good is about as relative as it comes) in the grocery store. We managed to make it all the way out to the van before the dessert contents were consumed. Before I even had a chance to buckle her in, the lunchable container was placed on the table between the two front seats. 

Buckled and ready to go, I glanced at the small plastic tray containing untouched meat, cheese and crackers. The only things missing were the cookies. I looked at my daughter, "What's this doing here?"

"I'm done," she informed me. 
"Really? What did you eat?"
"The cookies."
"Did you eat anything else? The meat, cheese, or crackers?"
"Why not?"
"I didn't want them."

Paying a buck and a half for a small snacky lunch, I am okay with that. Paying a buck and a half for two Oreos- I don't think so. I let her know that if she wanted any chance of watching her "Frozen" movie, she would eat two pieces of each of the other items.

So as her fit of rage commenced, I drove us to Chipotle to get my burrito bowl fix.While ordering two burritos and two bowls, my darling child clung tightly to my leg, screaming as though a puppy had been slaughtered before her eyes. Over her sobs and pleading, I calmly conveyed to the food artists which ingredients belonged in each burrito/bowl, every so often looking down and asking her if she was quite done. 

As the young man rang up my meals, he gave my daughter a pitying look. "Would you like some chips?" You can imagine the wail that erupted after his well-meant offer. 

"She's fine," I told him.

He bagged our purchases. "You can just have the chips," he whispered as he handed me the bags.

"You'll need 'em," remarked the helpful woman behind me.

I walked out the restaurant doors and texted my friend, "I have also discovered the trick to getting free chips at chipotle... it involves screaming children."

We then remained in the parking lot until one piece of meat and cheese was consumed. She choked those down along with her cracker under threat of staying in said parking lot until it was gone- overnight if necessary.

I've been pondering this post for two weeks now. Two weeks at least. Trying to figure out just how to put this. Then this past Monday night I listened to Beth Moore assure her audience that every single part of their life had been redeemed. Every part. That's what I've been thinking this whole time!

No one's life is all frosting and chocolate. No one's past is all dessert and sugar.

There are some things we'd rather just put aside and say, "I'm done now."

But the thing is- God has redeemed it all. Every single bit of it. He didn't just purchase the Sunday mornings where the sermon was absorbed, the bedtimes where every kid was tucked in all timely and peaceful.

He redeemed all of it- even the unsavory moments. Those idiosyncrasies we have that drive us crazy. the relapses. The careless, hurtful words. The death glares. The selfish moments. Unsavory, yes. Unredeemable, never.

Those moments in our past where we made the wrong decisions over and over again- when we can't even understand how or why God delivered us into the place we are now. He has redeemed those moments. He can use those for His glory. Every bit of them can be used for His glory.

There is not one part of you that God is willing to throw away.

Does He grieve over sin? Surely He does. As a parent yearns for the welfare of their child. As a husband yearns for the faithfulness of his wife. He is a holy God and cannot tolerate sin.

But our God doesn't revel in our good and tolerate our bad. He bought the whole kitten caboodle. And He can work with and on everything in our lives. Of course love like that would compel us to strive toward the goal of pleasing Him, but never once do we need worry that we don't measure up to His love.

He sent His son to do that.

Believe that. God loves you completely. Nothing is outside His grasp

His love far surpasses our failings, and it always will. Who doesn't need that?

"For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, 
that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 
so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 
may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God."
Ephesians 3:14-19

Linking lately with Simply Beth for Three Word Wednesday!