Not Just Ice Cream

This past weekend, we had a massive garage sale. Friday in particular was brutally hot, and we spent most of the day outside. Although I must admit, I tried to stay in the actual garage with a fan blowing on me as much as possible.

In the middle of the day, a dear family friend stopped by and visited with us for awhile. She is the sweetest lady you could ever meet. She is thoughtful, gracious, considerate, and never to be outdone when it comes to generosity. After her visit, we all commented how fun it was to have her stop by.

Later that afternoon, she texted me to let me know that she was picking us up some ice cream and would be by to deliver it to us shortly. I told her she didn’t need to do it, but she insisted. And sure enough, about ten minutes later, she rolled into the driveway with her delivery. For the record, it wasn’t just ice cream… It was Blue Bell. I grew up in Texas, and so the jingle… “Blue Bell, the best ice cream in the country,” actually means something to me.

I thanked her profusely, as did the boys. What she didn’t know until I told her, was that when I slipped inside to gobble down a quick lunch earlier, I wanted some kind of dessert. I had thought to myself, “It is so hot, some ice cream sure would be good.” But I knew none of us would be going to the store that day because of the garage sale, and so I figured ice cream was just out of the question. It was just a fleeting craving and a fanciful whim… so I thought. Until she brought ice cream.

I had not said a word to anyone about ice cream. I didn’t have to. The One who knows all things delights in every detail of my life, according to Psalm 37:23. He knew that He could nudge her heart to buy ice cream, and she would do it. So He did.

She did not know that I needed that ice cream reminder that day to remind me that if my Heavenly Father can cause someone to bring me the dessert I wanted on a whim, then He can tackle the other part of that verse, which says He also directs the steps of my life. It was a subtle reminder, but it was not lost on me. He threw it, and I caught it.

So when is ice cream not just ice cream? When it reminds that person receiving it of how intimately involved God is in their life. You see, it wasn’t just ice cream she delivered Friday… It was love… It was encouragement… It was hope.

So, this week, let’s be sensitive to those nudges… because we never know when it is not just ice cream.

Garage Sale Life

If you have watched our YouTube channel (Team A’s Life) last year in our first season, you probably discovered that PR31 and I love a good garage sale… both shopping at them and having them. You would also know that we differ on how to price items, and that we approach the buying process from a different viewpoint. But we still love them nonetheless.

We were talking today about how certain items ought to be priced when having a garage sale, and PR31 says to me, “Isn’t it crazy that pieces of your life can reduced to placing a sticker on them and selling them for 25 cents?” It totally caught my attention. We talked about how things that seem so important at one point in our lives, we are more than willing to part with as if they didn’t matter to us at all… like they are almost not worth selling later on.

I’ve been thinking about that off and on throughout the day, and I’m reminded of how Jesus said in His famed “Sermon On The Mount” in Matthew 6 that we should focus our attention on what really matters in life… those things that are going to last into eternity… that we should store up treasures in Heaven where they cannot be taken or destroyed… or in my words, sold for a quarter at a garage sale.

In the long run… like the forever, eternal long run… people are what matter. Relationships are what matter. Kindness, love and respect matter. Generosity and grace are matter. Feeding the hungry, healing the hurting and helping the poor matter. Taking care of widows and orphans matters. None of those “things” could ever be sold for 25 cents at a garage sale. But they just might generate some interest in your account in Heaven.

So before you buy that thing you just can’t live without today… ask yourself how long your satisfaction with it will last and how much you’ll probably sell it for in a garage sale five or ten years from now. That may make you think twice about whether it’s really worth it or not. When the next best seller has been written… or this season’s hot fashion trend is then a fashion faux pas… or that latest technology is totally outdated and no longer even supported by most devices, will it really matter that you had any of it?

I’m not against having cool stuff. I’m just more in favor of making sure I keep my priorities right. I want to stockpile treasures in Heaven instead of getting a quarter for something at a garage sale here.

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