A couple of month’s ago I saw a throw pillow at Target and I really loved it. It was big and soft and had red lobsters on it. It would go perfectly with my family room downstairs; my octopus picture on the wall and my mermaid sitting on the stairs were begging for a new addition to the decor. But I couldn’t justify the cost so I left the pillow on the shelf. Every time I was in Target I would see that pillow and my love for it never faded, but neither did the price.
Yesterday I was wandering the outer aisles of Target while waiting for my son to finish his trumpet lesson. You know what’s on the outer aisles right? Clearance. Always searching for a great deal I love those jam packed end caps filled with things I don’t need, yet just have to take home because it’s so cheap! Well yesterday was my day, low and behold there it was. My lobster pillow was on clearance! The only one left, it was all mine!
I already had placed nautical themed cloth napkins that were on clearance in my cart and I added the pillow to my haul. As I walked to the checkout I was super excited about my finds. But the Holy Spirit was trying to call me. I’m not sure how many times He knocked on the door of my heart before I finally answered but when I finally did respond the message was clear.
You do not need everything in this cart. One thing is a gift, the other is greed.
Humph. I was just about to checkout and I stopped my cart. I pulled out the packs of napkins, they were so cute and cheap. Did I mention cheap? I mean, 8 napkins for less than the cost of 4! Plus there was a pack that was missing a napkin and didn’t have a price tag and I was certain I was going to get that for next to nothing. Then I looked at the pillow. The pillow was a gift, the napkins were my greed. Now, it wasn’t like I was buying a new TV or something extravagant, $5 in napkins was by no means an over the top purchase but the Holy Spirit was clear on it all the same.
I walked up to the checkout and handed over the napkins telling the clerk that I’d changed my mind. I left the store with my lobster pillow and a light heart knowing that I had heard and obeyed the voice of my Father.
God cares about every single detail in our lives. He cares about the big things like our marriages and kids and He also cares about the little things like lobster pillows. He cares about everything because all those things affect our hearts. I could have easily figured out how to justify purchasing those napkins (trust me, I was already doing it in the store) but that would have been a symptom of a deeper issue at work in my heart. I don’t know why God didn’t want me to take those napkins home, maybe they were someone else’s lobster pillow. The why really doesn’t matter, what matters is the Who.
When the God of the universe, the great I Am, tells us ‘no’ you had better believe it’s for a good reason. We may never know the reason why but I promise you it is not to torture you. God is good. All His ways are good. Even when with our extremely limited perspective it looks bad, He is still good. Trust Him.
What is your lobster pillow? What’s the small detail in your life that you think God is indifferent to? I promise you He is paying attention, He cares and He is working every thing – big and small – for your good and His glory.