The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. Psalm 103:8
When I was in the eighth grade I was smitten. Calvin Divine was the star of our football team’s defensive line, and every time he heroically tackled the driving offense I proudly beamed. And the special tale is Calvin was sweet on me too. He regularly figured a way to cross my path when I was walking home from school, and often wooed me with comely bouquets. (Oh that Calvin, I have a suspicion nearby neighbors unknowingly contributed to his courting.) Oh lawdy, it sure made my tummy twirl to see Calvin’s glistening eyes. He told me I was pretty and real smart. Like a rightly-reared gentleman he always offered to carry my books for me but I vehemently declined. Did he think I wasn’t capable of toting my own bag? But finally one day I realized my self-sufficiency caused his heart true sorrow. The sparkle in his eyes sputtered. But bless sweet Calvin, he kept tryin,’ and tryin’, askin’ and askin’, until one day I said, “OK Calvin, I’m going to allow you to carry my schoolbag today.” Oh mercy, did he beam! He simply wanted to show me some kindness.
I was musing about ol’ Calvin this morning, wondering how his life unfolded. When my daddy moved us to the city sadly we lost touch. But I was considering how my friendship with Calvin mirrored God’s love. Calvin wanted to be near me as often as I would allow. He yearned to help me - to selflessly support me - to intently listen to me - to unconditionally care for me. Honestly, Calvin adored me. And do you know Jesus cares for you even more than Calvin did for me? He yearns for an intimate and trusting relationship with you. He wants to carry your burdens - to give you good gifts - to bless you.
God is smitten with you.
But just like my belligerence with carrying my own school books, we want to be self-sufficient. We’re intrigued with God’s overtures but heaven forbid we look weak or incompetent. “I can care for myself, thank you.” And surely our rejection of His affection saddens Him mightily. And where does it get us? Alone. Burdened. Overwhelmed. Oh so weary. And surely sorrowful. Wouldn’t life be easier if we’d allow the Almighty to help? He clearly invited us to cast all our cares on Him. Why? Because He intends to trick you or trap you? Because He wants to be the Boss? (Well, yes, that He does…) No, because He cares for you. He loves you so much He sent His Son to die that you might be holy in His sight. He came to give you an abundant life. He’s offering fresh, beautiful blessings each and every day, and He surely doesn’t need to raid the neighbor’s garden! Do you know He even sings over you while you are sleeping? (I had to consider if Calvin would go so far as to sing over me while I was snoozin’. Oh that special angel, he surely would have.)
Allow the Lord Jesus to care for you today.
Let Him carry your books with one arm and hold your hand with the other.
Oh, such sweet love.