HyVee just opened near my house.
“It’s just a grocery store,” I keep telling myself.
But it’s not just a grocery store.
It’s – – – it’s like angels bearing gifts of produce and baked goods descended upon my fair town and decided to share the manna with the human populus. When they opened the doors, the heavens parted and harps were plucked. Mothers wept and cried that they would name their unborn babies after this magnificent place.
We blindly stumbled into the store and were swept with the tide of people towards the epi-center of angelic choruses, and there in the bakery section we pressed our noses against the sparkling glass that seperated us from the cupcakes, doughnuts, and confections.
In dumb-struck awe, we then walked the 5 miles that made up the produce section, stopping before a purple cauliflower – I mean, come on people – purple cauliflower!
My 3 and 4 year old girls ohhed and ahhed over this amazing discovery.
We had to have one.
In the past week and a half, we have been to this sacred place seven times.
There was the purple cauliflower time.
Friday, we went for samples.
Saturday, we went because we could.
Sunday, we were running late to church and had nothing that could be eaten on the go. A trip to HyVee was an absolute must.
Another time we went for freshly made salsa.
One time, I made up an excuse to go.
And still another time, we went to gawk at the lobsters in the tank at the seafood counter.
As I stood there staring at what might just be the single most homely food on planet Earth, one of the crusty little guys stared back at me with it’s beady eyes. He shrugged helplessly, his claws rubber banded shut.
Meanwhile, his fellow crustaceans walked over him and each other in the tank – all with claws banded shut.
And somehow this got me thinking about personal freedom.
Don’t ask, it’s a strange place in this head of mine.
But the lobsters got me thinking about freedom.
And when God is personally present, a living Spirit, that old, constricting legislation is recognized as obsolete. We’re free of it! All of us!
2 Cornithians 3:17 (The Message)
He wants us free, and part of our freedom is growing up and learning the art of balancing responsibility and privilege.
But I hate growing up.
God knows this about me, so he helps me along by pulling his presence back just enough to give me motivation to want to grow.
There’s no winning with him sometimes.
Last August, I heard him tell me I was going into a Joyce Meyer kind of season.
“Okay, God. Great. What does that mean?”
Enjoy everyday life?
Read my Bible more?
I’ve been sitting with this since last August, and I’m only now just starting to understand it.
I’ve been listening to Joyce Meyer for the last couple of weeks and her daily broadcasts have reminded me why I love listening to her so much.
She is a butt-kicker.
And I mean that in the best possible way . Seriously.
She’s that trainer at the gym that you’re secretly afraid of. . . and kind of wish was training you.
I have mad respect for her.
I spent all of the latter part of my high school years listening to every teaching tape of hers that I could get a hold of. She helped to develop a lot of foundational truth in my life. And she is, in her own words, here to help the body of Christ grow up.
That’s what God meant by a Joyce Meyer season.
I’m in a season where I need to grow and expand, learn new things and apply my faith to everyday situations.
Did I mention, I hate growing up?
Graham Cooke calls it a season of hiddenness.
God feels far away.
He’s not really because he said he’d never leave us, but Graham says that God pulls away from our emotions so that he can teach us deep truth. His presence is so good that it’s hard to breathe sometimes, let alone learn anything new.
I can relate.
Maybe you can too.
Which is why I hate growing up.
I’m a worshipper by nature.
I’ve got this built in homing device that is always trying to sense his presence.
And a Joyce Meyer season means that I can’t feel his tangible touch 24 hours a day right now.
So what does this have to do with HyVee and lobsters?
Or maybe the moral is: Don’t be a lobster. Bound in thinking and confined to a small space in life. Growing up isn’t fun but it does come with privileges, like not ending up on someone’s dinner plate.
Okay, I can’t end it there. How about this.
No prolonged infancies among us, please. We’ll not tolerate babes in the woods, small children who are an easy mark for impostors. God wants us to grow up, to know the whole truth and tell it in love—like Christ in everything. We take our lead from Christ, who is the source of everything we do. He keeps us in step with each other. His very breath and blood flow through us, nourishing us so that we will grow up healthy in God, robust in love.
Ephesians 4:14-16 (The Message)