Friday, September 11, 2009

Phantom pains, they come and go

Twinkle Toes is my drama queen. Any of you familiar with the type? She started yelling in pain today out of nowhere and grabbing her leg. I asked her if she had done anything to it, I examined her leg, I did all that I knew how to do for a phantom pain as this by all rights appeared to be. Finally, I decided that it was sympathy she needed, so I mustered up my most sympathetic voice and said, "Oh, Twinkle Toes, I'm so sorry that your leg is bothering you. Knowing you're in pain just hurts our hearts." Mr. Monk added with irritation, "Yeah, and our ears!" So much for being sympathetic.

I couldn't help but notice tonight as we were at a barbeque with friends that Twinkle Toes was running and jumping and playing as if she hadn't a care in the world. Then as we were getting into the car at the end of the evening she acted like she was about to start in again, so I quickly reminded her that I had seen her running on her leg just minutes before. I also reminded her of the importance of being truthful. "Well," she said, "My leg is better, but just now I hurt my ankle."

Kids. We would never try to get away with that, would we? Not us mature, honest adults.

On one of the DVD lectures that accompanies Battling Unbelief John Piper relates a story about accountability. Before John Piper meets with people to counsel with them he makes a habit of first asking them if they've met with God that day. One particular man told John that he hadn't had time. John asked him if he ate breakfast that morning. Well, yes, the man told him. Then you had time John said. His point being that meeting with God should be our top priority of the day, more important even than eating. "Isn't life more than food and the body more than clothing?" Mttw 6:25b

Just like my Twinkle Toes and her leg, you'd think it's almost painful for us to draw near to God in His Word and prayer by the way we come up with excuse after excuse for why we don't have time. Then when it comes to something we "want" to do, we have all the time in the world. (I feel a little conviction here over the amount of time I've miraculously found for blogging of late.) The kids and I are working through the American Bible Society reading plan in the mornings and we're in Psalm 119 right now. There was a verse in this morning's reading that hit me like a ton of bricks. v 118 says "You reject all those who stray from Your statutes, for their deceit is falsehood." This verse stands in contrast to the majority of verses in Psalm 119 that reveal David's desperate longing for God's Word with his whole heart. And there it is. We either love God's Word or we don't. We can't have it both ways. For those who love God and His Word is the hope of salvation. For those who deceive themselves that there is something better out there, more worthy of their time and affections, is rejection. Their deceit is falsehood and offers no hope. They're lying to themselves. There is no such thing as a Christian who is too busy for God. This is a self-deception of our times. Well, maybe not just our times. Walter Marshall said of this in 1692, "What a strange kind of salvation do they desire that care not for holiness....They would be saved by Christ and yet be out of Christ in a fleshly state....They would have their sins forgiven, not that they may walk with God in love, but that they may practice their enmity against Him without any fear of punishment."

I'm grateful God teaches me daily through my kids (I told you I'm a slow learner). I needed the reminder today that the excuses I make for not having more time with God are just as obviously false to Him as Twinkle Toes' phantom pains that distract and prevent her from school work and chores, but somehow never interfere with recess. God gives us all 24 hrs in the day. What are we doing with them?


  1. Tonight at dinner Twinkle Toes called her phantom pains "growing pains!" "Growing pains" can be very painful--really.

  2. So true. I have realized that of late also. I was reading "spiritual Disciplines for the Christian life" and it had a chapter on how we use our time. MAN, talk about convicting. God's word says so much on the subject of it. I never fully realized before then. The subject of using time wisely has been on the forefront of my mind as of late......ummmmm....that's my queue to go make dinner for my starving

  3. I should have mentioned the Walter Marshall quote comes from The Pursuit of Holiness by Jerry Bridges. Actually he got it from A.W. Pink's The Doctrine of Sanctification.



Related Posts with Thumbnails
My photo
I'm an on-the-run mom to 6 kids who studied and taught exercise science in a previous life. I love all things running, nutrition, and health-related. I usually run at zero dark thirty in the morning and am often quite hungry before, during, and after my run, but I live a rich, full, blessed life with my children, family, and friends. My faith in God is my anchor, and looking to Him and His promises allows me to live fully even when life circumstances are difficult. While running gives me an appetite, my desire is to hunger and thirst for righteousness more than for physical food.