I’m thinking today that God is having a “teachable moment” with me. Not something general or abstract. No, a very concrete message telling me that I need to be thankful even when faced with a bit of a bother.
Yesterday I had to fast in the morning before getting some bloodwork done. It was about an hour or so until I was able to gratefully gobble down a chicken biscuit. But in that hour when I could hear my tummy growling, there was a whisper in my ear, “Jennifer… what about those children who go to bed with this feeling and wake up only to find there is still no food to assuage their hunger?”
Then today, for some reason we had a plumbing problem at my office and all the toilets stopped working. We actually had to leave the building and go to a local restaurant to use the bathroom for the afternoon. And yet, it is a trivial inconvenience when you compare it to the mass of humanity who have no access to clean water.
We are all so lucky to live in such prosperity and surfeit. But sometimes, our surplus can make us ambivalent about the struggle of those who are not so fortunate. So, today I will not let this reminder pass. Here is my Thankoffering prayer:
“God, I am thankful for this small bother… I am thankful for these minor nuisances that remind me I have a responsibility to support those who are in need. Amen.”
If you agree, won’t you join me in making a Thankoffering today? We give when we are thankful… and today, I am grateful for God’s continuing reminders… even if I do have to cross the street to get to the bathroom. Don’t worry, though… the plumber is on his way!
Jennifer Michael lives in Pensacola, Fla., and serves as the president of Women of the ELCA for the 2011-2014 triennium.