by Pastor Tim Burt
I have been asked a few times to reprint this post, so I am today! I hope it blesses you as it's been a very popular one with my readers!
One Sunday, after church, we had all the family over for a birthday party for our two granddaughters, Madeline and Macy. Being seven and eight, they love birthday parties. It was a great day of eating, having fun, and then presents and cake. When everyone except the girls had left, I asked them if they wanted to go for a walk with me. It’s a beautiful walk on a path along a mile stretch of wild flowers and a creek.
As we were leaving the house, they each wanted to bring their new dolls they had just received for their birthday. Generally I won’t let the girls bring them on a walk but I made an exception. As we were walking, they were little chatterbugs. Macy piped in first, “Papa, that was the best birthday ever! I love my doll so much. I was praying I would get a Tiana princess doll. I love her so much.” Madeline had gotten the same doll, another version. “Papa I love my doll too. Since Macy and me have the same one I am going to name mine Ashley. I love my Ashley Tiana doll too papa.” And on and on they both went out how much they loved the dolls and how it was their favorite present. Renee had done well and I was getting too much credit but I was happy that they were happy.
We had a fun walk and the girls made it much more active than just a walk. We watched the girls balancing on any ledge they could tightrope walk on. They repeatedly took off challenging me to race with them. And along the way, we make a pit stop half way along our journey at a park with playground equipment they liked to play on. They had fun showing off their climbing and high jump feats. And we were soon visited by ducks looking for someone to feed them. I had brought birdseed along in case that happened. The sky was cloudless and deep blue and it was spectacularly beautiful out. We were having a blast, when suddenly Madeline noticed that one of the shoes of her doll was missing. We backtracked and looked but didn't find it. A short time later, Macy cried out, “Papa, I lost Tiana’s tiara. It took me a minute to figure out that was her little crown. So again we backtracked while I was thinking, “This is why I make my rules and don’t let them bring dolls on the walk. This is your bad, Tim.” I stayed patient, we prayed, and we looked and looked, but, we didn't find either. I was proud of the girls as they kept a good attitude through it.
As we were getting near home, I asked them, “Did you girls have fun on the walk?” Madeline immediately responded, “No, I lost my dolly’s shoe. I didn't have fun.” Macy said nothing. I looked at them both and began to rattle off all the fun things we just did that we had so much fun doing. Madeline looked up and said, “You’re right, Papa. We had lots of fun. It’s okay if I lost one shoe. We still had fun.” Macy agreed.
The Lord spoke to me about staying focused on thinking about good things and not letting things that distract you or steal your joy invade your thought life.
This walk with the girls was a quick example of how a small setback almost stole the joy of the entire day. When I reminded the girls of all the fun things we did, they immediately lit back up and agreed and changed their mind.
The enemy of our soul is a thief and would like us to see the negatives so they overshadow all the good the Lord brings into our life. And so His solution to that is, “Think on THESE things…”
Philippians 4:8 (Message Bible) “Summing it all up, friends, I'd say you'll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse.”
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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