Maybe you’ll read this story I’m about to tell you and think, “what’s the big deal, it’s just a random coincidence.” Or maybe you’ll hear the story and not really care, but y’all, Jesus used this story in my life to remind me of His love and goodness, so it’s a good one if you ask me!
A few weeks ago I went antiquing with my friend Lacey. I found some great things I was excited to use in our home, but my favorite were these adorable little jadeite measuring cups. I never met any measuring cups I didn’t love, and anything jadeite might as well be gold if you ask me. So needless to say, I brought them home with me and was feeling pretty giddy.
I decided to use the measuring cups for jewelry – they were perfect for catching little earrings or my rings, etc. so they found a home on my little green bedside table. I had the thought, wouldn’t it be nice to have a little wooden box situation for them to be stacked on top, and I asked Ethan to build me what could only be described as a tiny wooden staircase. I even drew out my rough sketch of what I had in mind.
He was willing, but suggested I wait a little bit and see if I could find anything like what I was describing to make sure that’s what I wanted. So I waited, looked around whenever I was out, and then sort of forgot about it.
Then, this happened.
I get this message from my friend Lindsey who I went to high school with. We haven’t really spoken much since graduation eight years ago, and we didn’t even have each other’s phone numbers. So the fact that I just came to mind, and she happened to think about me for this little guy was especially unique. And all I could do was laugh! Because – this box, that she wanted to give me and no longer needed – is literally the exact design I had drawn for those little cups. It was something I had wanted, but hadn’t found. It was adorable, free, and just offered to me out of the blue.
Now, I know you may be thinking, well cool coincidence… but it’s not that big a deal. And maybe it isn’t really, but the Lord just used this little instance to really encourage my heart. See back in January, I decided on the word care as my one little word for 2016. My intention was to care about the Lord, care about His kingdom, and really rest in His care for me.
Other fun facts are that gift giving and acts of service are my love languages. I feel so much joy in doing for others and giving them the perfect, thoughtful gift. So needless to say, someone generously offering me a gift, that is exactly something I want/need/love, just because? Well that’s like the ultimate expression of love to me! I knew that the Lord was demonstrating His care for me through this gift, because it was way too specific to be random. The fact that He brought me to mind to someone I haven’t seen or spoken with in years. The fact that it is the EXACT design that I had hand drawn a few weeks earlier. The fact that it came on a day when I was extremely down, missing Ethan while he was away, feeling lonely and a little alone… definitely not coincidence to me. Because He cares.
1 Peter 5:6-7 has been my anthem this year – because the truth that He cares for me, undeserved and out of His goodness – is something that can cure a world of fear, anxiety or hurt. I can live in peace, casting all my fear, doubt, worry, uncertainty, anxieties on Christ because he cares for me! (That’s my elaborated version, but He can surely handle all those things).
I know that the receiving of the gift, the jewelry box, the peace, etc. does not make Him good — He was good long before any of that, and He is never changing. His character is not defined by my circumstance, but oh man, how these little examples of His grace point us back to a better understanding and awareness of His faithfulness! This little jewelry box, as seemingly insignificant as it may be for the kingdom, was the exact intentional reminder that I needed to rest in His care for me. He knew it was in my heart, and He provided. How amazing is God? He loves me, in my sin and error and anxiety, and offers rest, which I did not earn and do not deserve, out of His grace and mercy.
I was reminded of the Gospel once more this weekend, or as I’ve recently heard it called – regospeled – through this little act of kindness. All the things I was doubting or ignoring about the character of God came right back to the surface. So with that I pray, to God be the glory in our gift giving, in our trust, and in the way we live out our faith! May you find Him in the most unexpected places this week!