Everything’s On the Counter

I have some fond memories of coming into the kitchen on mornings when I had a full day ahead of me and Mom or Dad had taken the time to set things on the counter they knew I’d need. Sometimes I discovered things in waiting that I hadn’t thought of, but would later when I needed them.
Whether it was a fishing trip into the mountains or a field trip at school, those things waiting for me on the counter first thing in the day told me someone had been thinking about me, anticipating my needs for the day and made sure I had everything I needed to make the day a success and a pleasure.

I like to think of God doing that for us every day. When we come around the corner and into the kitchen thinking nothing but “coffeeeeee” there’s a backpack or briefcase sitting there containing everything we’ll need for the day. God has already been through today, He knows what we’ll need today and has everything ready and waiting for us. There’s usually nothing extra for us to lug around (unless we decide not to use it for some reason) but it contains all we need for the day ahead. (Philippians 4.19)

It’s more than sandwich, apple and chips; He knows what we’ll need today in the way of patience and encouragement, perseverance and faith, food, finance and shelter. He knows what temptations the adversary has scheduled for the day and has included a matching number of foil packets marked “Escape”.

I like to think of Him sitting across from me while I enjoy my juice and coffee. I like to imagine His smile as my eyes figure out how to focus again and I find my speaking voice. His words in the early morning soft-spoken and reassuring. I picture His smile when I compliment Him on His creativity in making the birds at the feeders outside the window, and the flowers opening to the early morning sun.

When the time comes to move into the day I imagine Him opening the screen door for me, smiling that I have my briefcase with today’s provisions. “All set?”

“All set,” I smile back, and nod a “thanks” at His holding the door for me. What my neighbors never see, primarily it’s between Him and me, is that He follows me to the car and goes through the day with me. He doesn’t even mind driving, making decisions, offering perspective and wisdom —when I ask Him to (such a Gentleman). The days I remember to do that, though? Always worthwhile – even if they’re hard.
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Everything’s on the counter for you today, friend. Your heavenly Father’s been thinking about you. He knows what you need today and it’s all waiting for you first thing in the morning. He is honored when we live with Him in mind, thankful for His provision, using the escapes He’s packaged for today’s temptations. If it’s been a while since you’ve “taken Him with you” through the day, give it a try. You might even let him lead — I doubt you’ll be disappointed in how the day goes.

Selah —


4 Replies to “Everything’s On the Counter”

  1. Jonell

    Thanks for sharing your perspective. I’ve seen you do this at times, but never knew the whole story. I’m gonna try it this week and see how I (we) do. He’s always with us, why not include Him in our conversations and our daily activities?

    I’m gonna go see what He left for me on the kitchen counter here at my house. 🙂

    Jonell

  2. Phil

    Good morning – You’ll enjoy this week if you see life through these lenses – I promise. (Can I say that to someone who works with lenses and frames and eye-doctors and appreciative patients?) 😀

    One of the interesting facets of this outlook is that we often don’t realize until afterwards that He’s provided for something. Kind of multiplies our gratitude when we recognize He already made provision for A,B,C. (At least it does me.)

    Phil—

  3. Jonell

    Okay! Changing to this kind of thought process is a gradual thing, but I’m gradually getting there. I find myself thinking, “I should be including God in this conversation that I’m having with myself” as I drive to work by myself.

    Gotta tell you this one … it’ll make you smile …

    I was on my way to work one day this week and I was talking to God, asking him to be with my husband at work, with my friend serving in Iraq, and then we got to talking about how green the trees were. I love this one country road that I take to work. As I rounded a wide corner, there was something at the edge of the road that I don’t remember being there before. It looked like a little upright post, but a small bush in front of it – then I realized it was a bird fanning his tail. At first I thought it was a Tom Turkey. I frequently see turkeys, but always enjoy when the Tom’s fan out their gorgeous tail. I kept going around the corner and watching this bird … and then I realized it had a plume on top of it’s head and the feathers on the tail fan were not brown, but turquoise blue. I said to myself and to God, “A PEACOCK? DID YOU SEE THAT GOD? A PEACOCK? HERE IN MICHIGAN?” And the hen was standing in the ditch. God didn’t say anything, but I imagined He smiled! 🙂

    Jonell

  4. Phil

    What a great story, Jonell! And you’re right, I smiled!

    And I think God probably DID smile “Ya like that? I made them, you know. Glad you enjoyed.”

    This ongoing awareness, or practicing the presence of God, as one Brother Lawrence (1600s) described it, can really be delightful. Brother Lawrence was a cook in the middle ages (no creature comforts to speak of in those days) and talked with the Lord all the while he was about his duties. At one point he so enjoyed the ongoing relationship with God that “stopping to pray” seemed a bit dull and uninteresting, since they’d talked about everything already and there was nothing happening to talk about during the consecrated prayer time.

    I’d love to be that close to my Lord, wouldn’t you? I sure like life, even the rough-road sections, when He’s right here and we’re talking about everything as it happens. And I’m thankful he had everything today needs set out and ready again first-thing this morning. What a great God!

    Phil —

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