My sons and I went to a baby shower on Saturday. I’m not sure why, but I had been thinking it wasn’t until next week so when I opened the invitation to check I went through a little bit of a mental scramble as to what to bring as a gift. I quickly found a tutorial for a stuffed owl that I could make with fabrics I already had and went to work. I also made a cute print for the baby’s wall.
I was alone in the house with my boys so there were plenty of interruptions, but I did get the gift finished. You’ve had those kind of interruptions before right? You know when they dump an entire bag of chips out on the shag rug. Ok, that’s not exactly accurate. What really happened was they shook the bag hard sending the chips flying in the air and then proceeded to dance around in the rain of chips and crunch them under their precious little feet.
Several interruptions later I realized we were running late. So I got the boys ready as quickly as possible and woke Chico up from his nap. We rushed out the door on our way to Target to buy a frame for the print I had made, ran through Target, and got the boys back into their carseats.
By this time we were really, really late. So I started to try to wrap the gift but it was windy and the paper was flying. It was a mess.
I got into the car and considered just driving home. I looked over at my ridiculously semi-wrapped gift and couldn’t decide whether to laugh or cry. I tore off the wrapping paper and tied a ribbon around the bare shipping box.
I decided it was more important to be there than to have a perfectly wrapped gift. I decided the paper and ribbon would be thrown out anyway, because what was inside the box was what held value.
This is all very similar to what’s been going on for me internally. I’m wanting to leave the wrapping paper aside. I want to give from what’s inside me. I want to speak the truth of God without having to wrap it up all pretty and soft to make it more appealing to everyone. I want to get past the superficial. I want to open my eyes and help others to open theirs to see.
I want to show up. I want it to be me. I want Him to use me. Not a prettier, quieter, different version of who I am, but who I really am. I may not be poetic. I may be a little socially awkward. I may say things that sound harsh. But I prefer to speak the truth the way it is, with my own voice, than to water it down.
I want to shout it at the top of my lungs. Church wake up! Open your eyes! Be wise!
So for the moment I will speak or write what He speaks to me. The truth His Word has given us. And I will be faithful in that. I’ll keep at it. I’ll write. I’ll speak. And I won’t be quieted.
Get the word out. Teach all these things. And don't let anyone put you down because you're young. Teach believers with your life: by word, by demeanor, by love, by faith, by integrity. Stay at your post reading Scripture, giving counsel, teaching. And that special gift of ministry you were given when the leaders of the church laid hands on you and prayed-keep that dusted off and in use.
Cultivate these things. Immerse yourself in them. The people will all see you mature right before their eyes! Keep a firm grasp on both your character and your teaching. Don't be diverted. Just keep at it. Both you and those who hear you will experience salvation.
1 Timothy 4:11-16