Some of my favorite moments are early morning enjoying a cup of coffee and being still. Recently, I have had difficulty– my coffee has lost its flavor. I have switched coffees, tried a French press, bought a grinder, but the coffee is bitter one day and weak the next. Sometimes my coffee describes my relationship with God! I pick up the Word and nothing fits, praying has lost its flavor or seems weak and nothing seems to meet me where I am.
This morning was one of those mornings. I desired time with the Lord. My cup of hot brewed coffee was excellent from the first sip when all of a sudden my male cat broke the morning silence howling and running from window to window knocking down everything in his way! I heard nothing but “bang, boom, bang”, as books were yanked from their neatly organized shelves resting below the window sill, plants being thrown from their stands dumping fresh watered dirt and pebbles everywhere while another cat awakened from her cat nap began hissing. My dog not wanting to be left out joined the party. Really?!
I was so frustrated but too tired to scream. It became a comedy watching my dog tease my cats when she found herself surrounded and cornered by animals half her size as she helplessly looked to me as her hair on her back stood straight up. My dog barked in her ferocious tone while the cats scurried under beds, over dressers taking everything breakable with them. Now my coffee was cold!
Doesn’t this scenario perfectly describe life? Our good intentions are interrupted with lifes’ little irritations? The Bible describes how irritations can rob us, but this is not the direction I was being led. Instead of hearing something I needed another heavy lesson in, it was as if I could hear heaven chuckle at the earthly comedy inside of my home. I stopped. I listened. I heard!
“Rita, I gave you these animals for you to love, but more importantly to help you lighten up! Sometimes I want you to stop and enjoy the calamity. I am still here with you as a book falls off its shelf, a plant dislodges dirt all over the floor scattering pebbles, barking and hissing. All of these are minor irritations. No one is hurt. It did break up your routine that prevents a new adventure. I don’t like routine it leads to mediocrity. I did not create you as a robot, but to live free. I still speak in the noise, in irritations and what appears as interruptions. Sometimes, I want you to know my presence in the every day moments of life not just sitting in the stillness of early dawn.”
I received. I began to pick up the knocked over plants, vacuumed dirt from carpet taking turns to stop and pick up my overly excited dog while speaking as softly as possible to each cat. My morning was NOT my intention or plan, but God was still there, speaking, loving me right in the middle of the chaos. I laughed aloud as I looked around at the total mess: another plant strewn all over the hardwood, pebbles being pawed playfully over the floor by two cats. I thought, “it can be cleaned.” God had not moved. He was not bound to a chair, quiet, and a good cup of coffee. His presence is always right where I am!
I made a fresh cup of coffee to enjoy while cleaning up the remainder of the mess. It was funny, because it tasted even better than the first sip of coffee earlier. This time instead of trying to “find God in the quiet”, I realized His presence right there– in the middle of living life. I shook my head, smiled as we cleaned together enjoying the other as a sweet peace filled my home while sipping a wonderful cup of coffee.