Saturday, February 29, 2020

Oil Can

About six years ago I found myself sitting on my bed with a spiral notebook on my lap, determined, yet again, to write something.  As I stared at the blank page, I scribbled the inspiration I had recently read: Write what should not be forgotten.

That was better.  Now I stared at a page that was only mostly blank. What should not be forgotten, my mind wondered? Certainly I have a lot to say on a broad range of topics - on faith, on finances, on family - but none seemed worthy of approaching that particular night. So I continued staring at the page. Blank. Painfully blank.

Slowly a doodle came out: the Tin Man, rusted to the side of the Yellow Brick Road, calling out for his oil can. For him, what should not be forgotten was definitely an oil can.

I recently read a short devotion by Mendell Taylor in his book Every Day with the Psalms. He likens oil for mechanics to joy for our souls. Keep that in mind when you're feeling like the Tin Man (you know, stuck where you are).

When I think about what God wants me to remember, my thoughts go to the Old Testament:

"Only be careful, and watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them fade from your heart as long as you live. Teach them to your children and to their children after them" (Deuteronomy 4:9, NIV).

The people of God were about to hear the ten commandments. For us, that may not seem that impressive. I've heard them many times. I'd guess that even non-believers could recite a few of them. However, for these people, they were about to hear God's law for the first time. As they waited to hear this new word from God, they were instructed to follow the law as a witness to neighboring nations, and they were instructed to never forget the things God had done to deliver them.

We sometimes forget that God is not a spiritual policeman, waiting for you to roll through a stop sign so He can give you a ticket. He is a God of great love who has made a way to save us. The wonder of that love should be taught to our children and grandchildren, ensuring that all generations to come will know.

I am not always good at telling my children the things I've seen God do.  He has protected me and made a way for me more times than I could say.  More than I know.  Let this pattern of silence be broken today.

No comments:

Post a Comment