My firstborn may have just turned 2, but he still doesn’t quite have the understanding that you shouldn’t eat food off the floor, and being that he’s a toddler, quite a bit ends up there when he’s eating. Today, he found a piece of a chip, and bent down to eat it. My husband intercepted, taking the crumb, which lead to our little one pouting and whining, asking for it back. “Dude, it’s a crumb. Do you want some chips? I can get you some chips if you want some,” My husband answered. As he took our son’s hand and moved to the kitchen, I sat back and thanked Abba for again speaking through my husband. How often do I settle for crumbs?
If you’re a mom, you might be used to standing over the sink with a half eaten plate of your child’s food and that being your dinner. Not only do we not want anything to go to waste, considering how resourceful we have to be, but that’s all we have time for. The idea of actually sitting down and enjoying a satisfying meal is almost a joke when you have young kids. We settle for this because that’s all we have time for. Many of us use the same excuse when it comes to spending time with the Father. There is always something else happening, and we’re on the go, just able to take in what we can quickly find along the way, whether that be from our 5 minute app or Sunday’s hour long service. We tell ourselves it’s just a season, but it quickly becomes habit, scavenging what we find instead of looking up and asking for what we really want or need. We tell ourselves the crumbs are from God, and thank Him for them, because we believe the lie that this is what he wants for us, and if we don’t have enough, we’re just not stewarding well.
Where is the abundant life Jesus offers? Many of us walk around as though that’s a joke too, or at least a pie in the sky idea that we’ll get eventually, but certainly not now. Our life just doesn’t leave abundance as an option, and we move into survival. We see others sitting at the banquet table, feasting on joy and contentment, pouring love and grace into their goblet, drinking deeply and pulling off another serving of hope. We push resentment down as we step under the table, looking for something that may have fallen off, disguising our skulking as asking for prayer, not really believing God will hear our heart’s desire, but supposing maybe someone we know who is satisfied will take pity on us and give us a little off their plate.
My church, every year, does a devotional for Lent called Leap of Faith. This year, I didn’t jump. I believed that what I needed, (security, stability, more money) God just wasn’t going to give me. I told myself that’s just not how He works. Even though I was deeply convicted, I never even cracked the devotional book. Despite my utter lack of faith, my deepest prayers began to be acknowledged, and seed I refused to sow began growing. Doctors extended grace to me when I found out my insurance company hadn’t covered even 1 visit my entire pregnancy, telling me we’d get to the bills in a few months. Money began falling out of the sky, not just in the amount we would need to get through the next 3 months, but excess, with more pouring in as we followed the leading to bless others with our resources. I had my children not just recognized, but utterly celebrated as we asked our community to join us in special occasions. I even had the minutia of needing friends to meet with me on Saturday, specifically, when my husband is gone for 13 hours of the day and I need help with the boys, answered, and not just answered, blossom into a beautiful beginning of friendship. I tell you all this for one reason: The abundance I refused to pray for, but desperately needed, I received; This leads me to believe Jesus is even more invested in my living abundantly than I am. I’m in awe of His grace and mercy.
So how do we walk away from our habit of gathering and living off crumbs and move onto believing what Jesus said is true?
Ask. Jesus lays it out here, over and over. “Ask, and it will be given to you, seek and you will find. Knock and the door will be opened.” (Matt 7:7, Luke 11:9-10) This is the risky part; It comes with taking a seat at the table. Jesus follows this verse in Luke with this: “Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him? (Luke 11:11) I understand those of you who say you don’t want the Holy Spirit, you want ________. I said the same thing. That moves into the next step.
Believe/Trust. If asking is the risky part, this is the hard part. The author of Hebrews says, “Without faith, it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe he exists, and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) When our life experience tells us we’re not even being acknowledged, let alone rewarded by God, trust. Trust that the Holy Spirit comes with good things, and that unlike man, who only has a certain amount, He has more, in greater volume than you could even imagine.
Praise. There is something about praising God for what He’s doing in our life, and for the seeds we know He will water and grow if we throw them out there, that gets us looking up. Paul, in 1 Corinthians says, “I always thank my God for you, because of His grace given you in Christ Jesus. For in Him, you have been enriched in every way- with all kinds of speech and all knowledge-God thus confirming our testimony about Christ among you. Therefore, you do not lack any spiritual gift as you eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed.” (1 Cor. 1:4-7) We praise God as we eagerly wait for His hand to be revealed, acknowledging the grace currently being poured out over us.
The crumbs are not enough. They are too little joy, too little power over our circumstances, too little resources, too little hope, because they are only what we can scramble together or manufacture ourselves. These and living off the stories of others as opposed to seeing God’s hand in our own lives will never fill us. Our Father is good, and has more than enough to meet our needs, you included. It is not His will that we would live in a state of distrust, keeping our eyes low for what might accidentally fall our way. He wants us to ask Him for what we want, believe that He wants to and will meet the deepest desires of our hearts and for His children to glorify His faithfulness. Satisfaction is on the table. Pull up a chair.
How can I pray for you? Leave a comment that I can add my amen to and hold with you in faith. Abba is good, and not just good, good to us. He is faithful even when we are faithless. Receive.