So here I am in my next chapter, the one that is earmarked retirement, and I find myself full of expectation. I am also a little embarrassed at how selfish my prayers sometimes feel. I find myself behaving like a child by asking for selfish things that my earthly father used to call ‘bicycle prayers’. My focus recently has tended to be all over the board and includes typical things like financial comfort, a little travel, the ability to paint and sell some of my work, as well as little material toys and gadgets and comforts. You get the idea.
Some of these come from increased hope for this newest chapter in my life and some, I suppose, from rationalizing expected rewards for diligently staying the course for decades, despite hardships. My logic mind knows that’s not how this works. My faith mind knows the reward comes later. My child mind, of course, is all about wanting a reward now and is perhaps exacerbated by seeing those appearing to be rolling in good fortune despite long histories of bad behavior.
I know it is absolutely destructive to start comparative thinking, especially knowing the foundation of the appearance of rewards rest on smoke and mirrors perceptions, so I find myself in the ongoing internal dialogue of a mature woman settling her impatient child. I tell myself I must be patient and have faith in what I know to be truth.
I have always believed in hope. I have hoped for good weather, and good jobs, and good friends, and . . . well, any number of things, just as we all do. I also tend to believe that hope is synonymous to faith – the optimistic belief that God will provide those things that you hope for, or pray for.
My entire life God has answered and provided good things in answer to my prayer, both for myself and for others. And like any good father He has given me what I need when I needed it, even if it’s not exactly what I prayed for, or when I expected it.
It was always better.
These last few weeks have been a reminder that I am blessed, and protected, and loved, and very much the child in this relationship. While I hoped for toys like a child my Father protected me, my husband, and our home from great harm done by spring storms.
So now I take a quiet moment to stop and smile. I remember to count all of the blessings God has given me. I stop seeing the illusions and see the truths; resume hearing the subtlety over the noise; and remember that things are just exactly as they should be.