I had a handsome lunch date on Tuesday. After a visit to check out a preschool, my three-year-old and I sat across from each other at a two-top at Chick-fil-A, swapped one grilled nugget for one fried (because I needed to at least TASTE the fried sweetness that is Chick-fil-A chicken), chatted about ketchup… it was noontime perfection! As we pulled out of the parking lot, he noticed a woman standing in the grass holding a sign. The conversation went something like this:
L- “Mama, what’s that lady doing?”
Me – “She needs help.”
L – His response could fuel a political debate, “Why is she just standing there?”
Me – “Because she is waiting.”
L- “What is she waiting for?”
Me – “For someone to give her money.”
And before the words came out of his sweet little mouth I knew what he was going to say, “Why don’t we give her money?”
My response – “I don’t have any cash.” Lie. I had $2.
The truth was, I didn’t want to give her my last two dollars – I never have cash! I didn’t want to reach over to the other side of the car – What if I couldn’t reach? That would be awkward. I didn’t want to hold up traffic coming out of the parking lot – Wouldn’t want the people behind me to honk!
I am full of it. Excuses, that is. And they need to stop.
If I remind myself of the gospel of Matthew where Jesus says, “Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.” I would realize that Jesus is saying to me, Abby, you made a lot of excuses for why you didn’t help me. A lot. The good news is that while I fill up on excuses, God wants me to be filled with the Holy Spirit. It’s crowded in this heart. There’s not room for both!
When we make the excuses, we are ignoring the promptings of the Holy Spirit and telling God those obstacles are bigger than Him.
I think my son’s response is another great example of having faith like a child. He doesn’t think of the obstacles. He doesn’t make excuses. He saw someone in need and said – They need. We have. Let’s do it.
What are we waiting for? What are the thoughts that get in the way of your obedience in those moments of inspiration?
Copyright 2015 Abby Brundage
Photo credit: Panhandler, by Leroy Skalstad (2009) via Freeimages.com