Monday, December 21, 2009

Just Give Me a Kiss!


I hadn't planned on participating in Blog Kissing Day today, but who wants to be on the cranky side of Sherrinda, Karin and Krista?

I hope you enjoy this kissing scene from my book, "God is Bigger"

When our children were tiny, neither of them could pronounce the letter “L.” Esther said it like a “Y” so that “I like you” came out “I yike you.” Ron’s sounded like “W” where “pillow” turned into “piwwow.” It was especially amusing when Esther was five and Ron was two, because neither had yet outgrown this little impediment.

One afternoon I paused from a book I was reading and asked, “Who wants to give Mommy a kiss?”

“A kiss on the yips?” said Estie.

Ron hotly corrected, “Not the yips, the wips!”

“Someone just give me a kiss!” I laughed.




Since the kids were too consumed with where to kiss me and how to say it, they missed the point of my simple request.

I wonder how often I behave the same way toward God. He says, “Talk to Me, please.” I argue, “Right here, in the middle of Wal-Mart? Can’t I at least wait ‘til I get in the car, or home in the bedroom on my knees?”

He asks, “Do a favor for that person who treated you nasty.” I argue, “And let them hurt me again?” As if God doesn’t know them, and I can’t trust Him to keep me safe or heal my hurt.

He tells me, “Just relax.” I want to make a list of forty-seven ways to relax, and then check them off as I do them!

Why do we enjoy complicating things? Does it make us feel important and powerful? Do we think we are helping God express Himself better than He could on His own?
Every year, bookstores sell millions of books on “how to live the Christian life.” Books like these can be helpful. They can also confuse us, if the messages contradict each other or have so many “steps to success” that we feel overwhelmed.

The Bible is not a list of “do’s” and “don’ts.” It is a roadmap to eternal life, a comfort in stress and sorrow, and a handbook for successful living. If we turn it into merely a rule book, it appears harsh and demanding. After awhile, we conclude that God is harsh and demanding, too. If we don’t memorize a verse a day or bow our heads while praying, we might think we’re displeasing God. Then when He says, “Give me a kiss,” we strive to learn how to pronounce it correctly and where to plant it!


Someone once asked Jesus, “What must I do to work the works of God?” His answer still shocks us: “Believe on Me, because I am the One sent from God.”

What? No do-do-doing stuff to impress God? Just trust in Jesus? Can it really be that simple?

I believe so. If you love someone, you will want to make them happy. Spending time with them, just getting to know each other, will come naturally. You don’t need them to fill out a questionnaire on what color tissues they like to blow their nose on, how many pickles they prefer on their sandwich, and what order they go on the rides at Disney World. That would subtract all the joy from your relationship.

Yet that’s what we do when we make Christianity into a religion instead of the relationship it was meant to be.

God doesn’t search for achievers. What He’s looking for are believers. A few good men, women, boys and girls who will trust Him enough to place their entire life in His hands. To go where He says go, to have faith in His love, and to believe His word even when situations look hopeless.

I know it’s harder to do that than following a long list of rules, because it requires listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit, rather than men’s traditions. It means going to God for advice instead of Aunt Shirley or a talk show psychiatrist. It means believing in Jesus as the one and only Son of God.

It is called “faith,” and it's the only kiss God wants for Christmas.

28 comments:

  1. I loved that! So very, very true. thanks for sharing! And the kiss on the yips/wips is adorable!

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  2. Awww! How adorable, Jen! I always love how kids get their letters mixed up. My son says "yewwow" for "yellow." And it's so cute! And I loved getting a slice of your writing! Beautifully done!

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  3. You'd better be participating!! :)

    Have a wove-wy day ;) (Love your story!)

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  4. What an excellent article!!! I love the analogy because it's SO true.
    I hope you have a wonderful Christmas!

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  5. The yips and the wips. I'm going to use that on my man.

    I love that God isn't looking for achievers, but believers!
    ~ Wendy

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  6. Aw Jen, such a warm and filling post. Thank you! And Merry Christmas.

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  7. Merry Christmas and GOD BLESS!

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  8. Lovely post my friend and much needed.

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  9. So adorable! Love your kids sweetness. Hugs to you. :O)

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  10. My cup overflows! Every time I think of the goodness of Jesus! Thanks Jen for teaching us about the kiss that matters.

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  11. A kiss for your story of faith!!!

    Blessings,
    Patti

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  12. OK, you SO win. I sunk into your writing and never wanted to leave. I must have an ARC when you sell your book. I'll be your biggest fan, I promise! XOXO Well done Jen!

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  13. I'm with T.Anne! You are amazing and I was so touched by this post! And girl, you won't find me NEAR any pair of cranky pants today! Oh my, the fun of all this kissing!

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  14. Is it human nature to try too hard to do the very simplest things... to believe what God wants must be more complex... to do instead of just give over to him? Oh, for the faith of a child!

    Thanks, for sharing that sweet tidbit about your little ones. It was the perfect lead in to your message. (And isn't this Blogfest a great idea?)

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  15. Loved that, Jeannette! That was so great! Thank you so much for sharing it!

    Have a Merry Christmas!

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  16. How lovely and true. Solutions always come quickest (and best) when we go to God first.

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  17. This was so real and lovely! Thank you for sharing!

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  18. awwww ... I'm looking forwrad to lots of "wips" and "yips" from my little nieces and nephews this Christmas!! Thanks for sharing!

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  19. Love the story, and the lesson you brought out of it! I over-complicate things all the time. I've been meditating on that very thing lately and aiming to trust God for a simpler perspective for the new year. Blessings to you and your readers! :)

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  20. I just LOVED that, Jenn! We do like complication and drama in our lives, don't we?
    Wonderful reminder that God loves us and wants us to love Him--not because we're perfect or for what we do, but because He is sovereign, holy, and good.
    I can't wait to read your whole book!

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  21. Jeanette:
    I wove the story about your wittwe ones. (I couldn't resist) I agree with Karen, we do tend to over-complicate things. When man does it, he messes things up. I also have to think about this in the new year.

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  22. Your children story is wonderful and the application is soooo true. Complications, verses faith. Great post, Jeanette.

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  23. Hi Jen -

    What a nice Christmas present to give the Savior - our hearts and our love.

    Thanks for a sweet, inspirational post.

    Blessings,
    Susan :)

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  24. Wow,
    I so adored this. We do want to help God out don't we? Find it hard to believe at times that he just wants us,..not all our deeds.

    Thanks :)

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  25. what a great "bringing it home" kind of kiss story! and so true. thanks for sharing, jeanette!

    jeannie
    Where Romance Meets Therapy

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  26. What a cute story. Love that God doesn't want achievers, just believers. I can do that, even when it's hard, it is so wonderful. I'm a day late, but kisses to you and all my blogger friends.

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  27. What a great lesson! I loved this!
    So true!

    Jenni James

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  28. Thanks for your sweet comments, friends.
    Christmas Kisses to you from the Lord Jesus,
    Jen

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