My thoughts (Theresa Benson):
There it was, almost 5:00 pm, and I had 15 guests invited to a get-together at my house at 6:00. Scrambling to put the finishing touches on a quilt I’d promised to make for a friend’s granddaughter, I hadn’t started putting the food out, hadn’t walked the dog, hadn’t showered yet, and everything for the mulled wine I’d planned to make, which takes a couple hours to simmer to start to taste really good, was still in the grocery bags from my run to the store that morning. Oh, and did I mention that I still had a couple presents to wrap and needed to pack for a trip for which I was leaving bright and early the next morning?
Who planned this party tonight, anyway?!
I certainly had all the ingredients for full-blown panic to set in, culminating in a mad rush around the house trying to get everything together in time for when the doorbell rang. I needed some major help here.
I’ve recently taken the basic Discipleship classes (101 and 102) here at church, and one of the things we discussed and practiced was really cultivating a relationship with God — talking to God, asking for help, thanking God for all the blessings we receive every day.
For me, this has historically been a scary proposition, as my image of God had been damaged by my relationships with adults as a child, and I thought of God as angry, withholding, and punishing. And while I am working to improve my image of God, unlearning something many years in the making can be a tough job.
However, putting trust in the things I’d learned, and in the examples that my friends here at church have shared with me about a God who loves me and is intimately interested in creating an abundant life with me, I realized that if I’m going to be in relationship with someone, I certainly better not leave that One off the guest list to my party!
Right there, in that moment, I decided to stop panicking and talked with God, and gave a last-minute invitation:
God, I’m frantic about getting everything done in time for my party. I’m sorry I didn’t think to invite You sooner, but I need Your help. You are Infinite, and in the grand scheme of things, time means nothing to You. I need a miracle here — can You stretch out time or something so I can get done everything I need to and send Your Holy Spirit and help me be calm when my guests arrive? Please be with us tonight at this get-together. Thank You for keeping everyone safe tonight and for helping make this a lot of fun. Love You!
Shortly after this, I got a phone call that a couple folks were going to be late, and would arrive around 6:30. A couple more called to say they, too, would be delayed. Amazingly, I had my shower taken, the dog walked, the food out, the music going by five after six, and still had a few minutes to sit with the dog and relax before my guests arrived.
Thought for the day: Whenever I’m stressed, I’ll ask myself: “Did I invite God to this party?”
We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. If you need a place to start, consider the guidelines on the How to Pray page.