I’m a Gold-Star-Loving Girl.
Wouldn’t it be great if we went through life filling a gold-star chart and feeling appreciated for every small task we were to achieve?
“Great dinner, Mom.” Gold Star.
“Thanks for the ride.” Gold Star.
“That’s the best book I’ve ever read.” Gold Star.
Stars would appear and line up in a neat row, hanging above our heads as we’d move through the day. They’d brighten our path—as stars do. They’d confirm we were doing what we needed to be doing and living the type of life that would make God (and our mothers) proud.
Of course in life we often don’t receive gold stars.
We help/bless/nourish the lives of other people, and sometimes—if we want to state the truth—all we feel is tired.
I remember feeling this way awhile back. I was nearing a book deadline and my Grandma needed a ride to the store. Usually I enjoy taking her. We go to lunch and make a day of it. This day that was not the case.
The hardest thing was that my grandma took FOREVER to shop. The tension of my deadline restricted my chest as I hurried through the store, checked out, and waited. And waited. And waited.
Finally, after thirty minutes I saw my Grandma getting into the checkout line. While seeing her wide smile greeting the checker, my heart melted. The tension was gone. The worries of the deadline shrunk like a wool sweater in a hot dryer.
“This is just as important as any book you’re writing…” The words filled my mind and then they were gone. At that moment I understood. It’s not about the tasks … it’s about God, walking with His love, in His love, throughout the day. Seeing each moment as part of His design to connect with Him.
I was reminded of this truth again this morning as I read this quote from Sister Wendy, “All life is holy. If we are truly oriented toward God, then our slightest activities—shaving, reading the newspaper, putting out the cat—are a form of prayer.”
Sister Wendy goes on to say: “… How can we doubt that at every moment Jesus was intimately united with His Father? Providing wine for the wedding guests at Cana was as sacramental for Him as feeding the apostles with His body and blood at the Last Supper.”
Everyday, ordinary, time consuming, patience-stretching stuff is what life is about. Loving God, and turning to Him prayer, don’t only happen in the solitude moments. They happen wherever we, whatever the challenge, as we turn our minds and our hearts to Him.
Even at the end at a checkout line. Even there.
God, show me the moments that I can turn into prayer. Use my smiles to melt the hearts of those around me, softening them for your love and truth.
Let’s play a game!
My book The Kissing Bridge is a featured item in Barnes & Noble through August 18th! Next time you’re at Barnes & Noble, snap a photo of the book and post it on social media with the hashtag #iSpyTriciaG – You’ll be entered to win a $25 Starbucks gift-card and 5-book prize pack!
Only those in the US are eligible to win. Keep your eyes peeled for the winner announcement on August 19th!