“Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!”
My father wasn’t a rich man. He worked hard at his insurance business, gaining the respect even of his competitors. Every one considered him their best friend. He had a wonderful marriage and a loving family. We had everything we needed and most things that we wanted. But I remember a time when I was disappointed that what I got wasn’t what I expected.
One summer I had choice; Camp or a bicycle. But Camp only lasted a week; a new bike would last a long time, so I chose the bike. I had a vision of something shiny and blue with chrome fenders.
We all went out to the front yard, and there stood the ugliest bike I had ever seen. He had found what was affordable with three daughters to provide for. He had some shiny chrome fenders he planned to replace the rusty and dented ones with, and he bought blue paint.
My reaction was typical for my age—angry and sad. Looking back, he was so understanding. He knew it was not what I wanted. He patiently told me that he would make it beautiful. I was doubtful and just wanted it put in the garage before any of my friends saw it.
My father worked so hard sanding old paint and rust off. By the time the new fenders were on, with new paint and a nice basket for my school books, it really looked pretty good. Kids being kids, no one looked close enough to be able to tell it wasn’t new, they just thought it was cool that I could now ride my bike to school.
Just like my dad, my heavenly Father wants to give me the best He can give. Sometimes though, His best and mine aren’t the same. He is not just giving gifts, He is raising His child, and lessons have to be taught. Some of the most important things in my life didn’t come the way I expected that they would.
In these tough economic times many of us, want things we just can’t afford. But we have to keep in mind, that just like my dad, God doesn’t always give us exactly what we want, but He does give His children exactly what they need. It may not be packaged like we imagine, but in God’s economy, it will be His best—and exactly what we need.
Copyright by Norma Gail Thurston Holtman. Do not use without written permission of the author.