Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 ESV
As some of you know who follow this blog, I served most of my ministry as a lay pastor (as in didn’t get paid). But far from being a problem, the lay pastor situation gave me opportunity to serve as an associate at a small Brazilian church for 14 years, and a volunteer chaplain at a large nursing home. Some days, it was like the Clark Kent/Superman scenario, where I rushed home to shower and change clothes, then hurried out to hold the Wednesday afternoon services at Allied Skilled Nursing. I loved serving both at church and nursing home, but it was at my secular job, that God taught me the best lessons. So, let’s rewind 30 years to a day when I was mowing lawns. My home state Connecticut could be named after a Native American word meaning, “Land full of rocks!” Practically every lawn we mowed had at least one large granite boulder to mow around. One very nice property in particular, was blessed with an abundance of enough stones to build one of our famous New England stone walls. My friend Noel, who just started working with us, was not familiar with our properties and so he accidently grazed over one unseen stony protrusion after another. Finally, He stopped, said a few choice words and stated, “You guys have the worst lawns I have ever seen!”
“Come on Noel.” I said trying to keep a calm tone. “These are the ones Jesus gave us.”
“Well then, Jesus must not like you very much!” Noel retorted, then restarted his machine and began mowing the back half of the property.
Now, I know Noel’s opinion isn’t proper theologically, but I have often felt a lot like him! Some days it feels like other folks have nice easy lawns to mow. They don’t have rocks to mow around or hidden outcroppings lurking just beneath the tops of the long grass. Sure, I know that Jesus Loves Me Because the Bible Tells Me So, but there are some days I wonder how much He likes me! The answer I have discovered after whacking a number of rocks in my 71 years, is that God allows rocks to mow around because He does care. He loves us so much that He has given us the chance to go back time and again to difficult people, hard places and sticky situations until we remember where the rocks are. Then we can give Him thanks, in every situation as we learn to mow around them!
11 thoughts on “Jesus Must Not Like You Very Much!”
Isn’t that the truth! Good post, Pete! You have yourself a blessed day, brother! ❤️
Pastor Pete, this is an excellent post. I love this idea, “He loves us so much that He has given us the chance to go back time and again to difficult people, hard places and sticky situations until we remember.” God bless you.
Oh yes, He does! He not only gives us the chance, but He also insists on it! Thanks for your comment Manette.
Isn’t it amazing that God grows our relationships with others as we draw closer to Him?
Yes Barbara…it is miraculous!
Had to apply this so hard to my hard heart today, and shared it with a friend who is sharing my trials as I attempt to serve my HOA on the board. One of these days, the story may show up in a blog, but hopefully after I’ve learned this lesson.
❤️& 🙏, c.a.
Oh I understand a little as I also serve on a board in our small community. Fortunately my main function is to simply write the column for our newsletter.
I needed this post today. Thank you for sharing. I completely agree with you, God does give us the rocks and He has a perfect reason for each.
You’re so right and God knows exactly where to lovingly place those rocks in each of our lives.
Such a great reminder, Pete! Sometimes I want to pick those rocks up and throw them, but that wouldn’t be at all what God wants. May I learn the lesson you have presented so well today.
Me too Patty! Me too! It is one I need reminders of of a regular basis. Thanks for joining the conversation.