Thank you, Linda, for being the first “minivan fan.”
…but let’s back up. That came later. The title, I mean. Many years later. Out of the blue.
The message was what I knew. For so many years, I had convinced myself (and I think quite a few others) that God had created me to be a wife and a mom. It just felt like the right thing. The most sensible thing. The how-could-this-be-wrong-why-wouldn’t-God-want-this-thing? But what God had so lovingly shown me, many years earlier, out of a broken engagement, actually (my Isaac on the altar, if you will), is that when you consider The Beginning, His design for us was this: one at a time, for His good pleasure and to be His image-bearers on earth.
Adam was hard at work in the garden doing several things, co-existing with his Creator before God decided to bring Eve into the picture. And don’t even get me started on the whole “it’s not good for man to be alone thing” as I personally don’t think that applies solely to marriage. Think about it, my friends…when people are by themselves too much, they just plain get weird, and selfish…and WEIRD! God designed us to hang around and interact with one another – even to need one another for a variety of reasons.
But we’ll talk about that another time. Back to the minivan …
I’m driving somewhere in the good ole mid-west U.S. of A. for my amazing work. Minding my own business. On the way to meet a friend at a coffee shop. While stopped at a light, I absent-mindedly look up and there it is: The Minivan. The one we’ve all seen a million times before. But I take it in as if for the first time, as it slowly starts to come into focus in its totality: the little stick figure family. The soccer ball. The Jesus fish. (Ok, I don’t know if there really was a Jesus fish, but I imagine in my world there would be). Suddenly, it was as if the Lord himself was sitting right beside me. My counselor. My friend. And he said to me, “Michelle, there’s nothing wrong with being a wife and a mom. You would have been good at it, you would have done your best to honor Me in it, but I CREATED you for more… I CREATED you …first and foremost, for Me!”
The important thing to notice here: God wasn’t saying I was special. He wasn’t saying He singled me out or set me apart to do some lofty, earth-changing thing. The emphasis wasn’t on the “me” part but on the “created” part.
Let’s break that down for a moment:
I – God of the universe. The Alpha and Omega – Beginning and the End. Who spoke into existence time, space…and all that we see, hear, touch, smell, think, imagine, experience.
Created – made, formed, fashioned, breathed life into.
You – me!, one-of-a-kind, completely unique, not only with my very own fingerprints but with my own set of thoughts, ideas, passions, heartbreaks, plans, purposes and days on this earth to live out!
for Me – the intimate, loving God who I did not have to reach up to…but who reached down to me. Who saw my face when He took on human form and walked among men…when He was nailed to a cross and died a death I deserved.
Can you see why everything else would be “gravy”? That has to be enough. When God showed me that, I had to say, Lord you don’t owe me one single thing. Ever.
So, what’s your “minivan?” Is there anything (even good things? Even “God” things?) that you may just have allowed to sneak in and set up and become more important than God himself? It can happen so subtly that maybe you don’t even realize it. We can do it with our families – our spouses…our kids. Our careers. Our bank accounts. Our social calendars. Our hobbies. Our homes. Our passport stamps. Even our ministries. God may have very well called us to steward those things during our brief time on this earth, but in the end, when it comes down to it (because everything else WILL pass away) – He just. Wants. Us.
Life is short. Eternity is forever. Choose this day whom you will serve.
But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you,
then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve… Joshua 24:15