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Glimpse of Grace and a Piece of Toast

     Because of his parents’ work schedule, my five-year old grandson comes to my house for breakfast on just about every school day.  Usually I am scurrying around when he arrives but one day I was more prepared than usual. As his usual arrival time approached, the bread in the toaster for his “go-to” breakfast of buttered toast. The butter had been set out long enough to be spread-ably soft. Then I sat in a chair strategically placed by the window and waited for his mom to careen into the driveway with her minivan! I waited, and I waited and I waited. Finally, I called his mom. “We’re running late,” she breathlessly explained. “I’m trying to get everyone buckled in. We’ll be there in a few minutes.”
     I walked to the kitchen disappointed. This just wouldn’t do, I thought to myself. Toast is such a small thing but for me to be ready in advance advance of anything–all prepared, ready to go–that was a big thing! I took the toast out of the toaster. It was already hard and crusty. No amount of butter would soften it up! It was nothing more than a big crouton!  
    It’s funny where you mind takes you sometimes. The queerest thoughts often pop into it. As I buttered this crouton-that-once-was-toast I resigned myself to the fact that I’d make another piece of toast for my grandson when he arrived and would once again be “Pop the Unprepared!” And then, a glimpse of grace; a “prayerful word” that I received years ago wandered into my thoughts. One simple word. “Patience.” Originally the word came out of the blue to me during my morning devotions, but patience is not something that I am good at practicing. When I want something I want it now. I don’t like to wait. If I could, I’d “fast-pass” all of life’s rides not just those at a Disney theme park!  But that is not how life works, is it?
    “Wait for the LORD,” the Psalmist wrote. “Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the LORD.” (27:14) So I waited. And then I made another piece of toast. Each day I must remind myself to  learn how to wait, to be strong and to have courage.

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