A small flame

A small flame

when you just want your raisins without worms

{or Micro-managing God}


My Mom tells a story about buying a box of raisins for my brother and me as a treat. (That may not seem like much in the American mind-set, to a little girl growing up in a third-world country, a box of raisins was a great treat : ) But when she opened the box of raisins at home, my Mom discovered that the entire box was infested with little, white worms. Those sorts of things just happen in third-world countries. By the time she discovered the problem, it was after 5 pm and the stores in our little town were closed for the day. There was no way to buy another treat. And so, the story goes, she pulled my little brother and me into her lap and we all sat together and cried.


Some days all you want is worm-free raisins.



my brother and I


What none of us could have known on that sad, raisin-less day was that God was writing a precious, unexpected story for our family. A few years later, on a furlough, my Mom told our raisin story to a group of ladies and, afterwards, was approached by one of the women in the audience who asked, 'Is there a way I could send you raisins in Papua New Guinea?' And, after that, every month for years, a box of fresh, worm-free raisins arrived at the post office . The Raisin Lady, as we named her, is forever an important part of my family's story.

And you might well be wondering what this trip down my memory lane has to do with your Monday morning?

Well, I have realized that God writes much better stories than I do! If I wrote the story, there would not have been wormy raisins - just two little tykes with raisins in their bowls and one happy mama. But if I wrote the story, there also would not have been a Raisin Lady. I couldn't have even imagined a Raisin Lady!

And I've watched myself still doing that - still trying to write my own story. 

I come to God with a request and a detailed plan I've made for how He can best answer my prayer. Sometimes I even have options: 'I've got plans A, B and C, God. I know You're sovereign, so You can choose which one You use.'

Um,  yeah. . . .
And, sometimes, it looks like he's not answering at all. Sometimes, I spend some time sitting on the couch holding my life-box of wormy raisins. But, amazingly, in spite of my silly, presumptive lists, God is always at work.

The Master Author doesn't need any help from little, unimaginative me. I can just see him, smiling a bit and shaking his head as he ignores my list and creates another 'raisin lady' for my story. Something completely unexpected and wonderful and far, far better than I could have possibly come up with on my best day!

Whether your day is a box of chocolates or a wormy, raisin-y one, rest in the knowledge that the Master Author already knows how your story ends. And it's a beautiful story.


Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think, to him be glory. . . Ephesians 3:20







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