In life, when I get into trouble, it is like falling into a lake, and I cry out to my Lord who loves me, to help me. I desire instant assistance or at least the strength needed to help myself. I wait. And sometimes wait some more. I wait until I believe my arms will fail to keep my head above the water. The whole time I’m waiting, when I’m not mumbling about the wait, I am dreaming, envisioning what my Lord’s help will be like. Someone big. Someone strong. Someone to shoulder the burden of pulling me out of the depths of this lake. And of course, my Lord who loves me, would surely throw in someone who was at least handsome. You know, with princely good looks.
I finally see a shadow fall across the ground and look up as the greatly anticipated help approaches. The large, the handsome, the only one whom my Lord who loves me would surely send…I don’t know about Shirley, but his help is a squatty, fat man! He has a huge nose with a wart on it. He is stoop-shouldered and the only thing that is large about him, besides his nose, are his feet! And more appalling than the sight before my eyes is the stench that has reached my nose. He opens his mouth and words come out that bring disbelief:
“Your Lord who loves you, has sent me.”
He’s here to give me hope! That’s it! To tell me help, real help, is on the way.
“No, Your Lord who loves you, has sent me to help you.”
It couldn’t be. This isn’t the kind of help I need. I need large! I need strong! I want handsome!
“Your Lord who loves you, has a message to help you. He says to drop your head all the way into the water and you will be able to pop right back up all the way out of the lake, just like in a swimming pool.”
Not only is this help a squatty man…
Not only is this help not handsome, way not handsome…
Not only does this help stink…BUT it has the nerve to tell me to put my head into the water after I’ve struggled to keep above the water while I have waited and waited and waited some more. There is just no way he could be sent by my Lord who loves me!
I struggled in the water some more. I waited some more. My arms grew weaker, and then weaker still. In desperation, I cried out again to my Lord who loves me. He was standing in front of me. My embarrassment was overwhelming. His help I wanted. To face Him in the midst of my trouble, I did not want. He reached down His hands and gently, effortlessly pulled me from the depths. As we sat on the edge of the lake, He gently asked me:
“Why did you not receive my help earlier?”
Help? What help? I looked for the strong one that I was sure would be able to pull me out of the lake, but he never came.
“My child whom I love, I did not send someone to pull you out, but to tell you how to get out with the strength you already had, but had not used.”
But the only one who came was that little, stinky man. If that was who you sent, why?
“He was willing to go for Me.”
Sometimes when we are in trouble, we get in our minds the kind of help we need from God. We keep waiting on the answer we want instead of accepting the answer God gave us because He knows what we need.
Be open to the solutions that God sends, not just the ones we expect.
Be willing to see and hear from a stinky, little man who tells us something we don’t want to hear, instead of waiting for a prince who we think will solve all our problems for us. Rarely are princes willing to be messengers.