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11 July

Melting Tears

Amid the chaos of coming home late from church and hurriedly beginning to prepare for lunch, I heard the distinct clatter of a bag full of toys being dumped onto the kitchen floor.  With an inward groan of irritation, I turned to see Rachel standing in the middle of a pile of toys sporting a great big grin on her face.   

The troupes were restless to be fed, as was my own stomach, so I asked her big sister Crystal to help her pick up the toys.  With my attention returned back to preparing lunch, I tuned out the commotion going on at my feet until I heard tears of frustration coming from Crystal. 

Looking down, I realized that she had obediently picked up all of the toys and with great discouragement was upset with Rachel for not noticing what she had done to help her.  Trying to soothe her, I reassured Crystal that I had seen her hard work, and that I was truly appreciative of it even if Rachel was oblivious to it. 

As I spoke my words of motherly wisdom to her, it donned on me, here I was playing out the exact scene I had participated in with God on so many occasions.  Only it had been me who was upset for not being noticed or appreciated by someone for the effort and sacrifices I had made for them.  

From where I stood, it was obvious to me that there was little to no hope that our 3-year-old Rachel would be able to appreciate what Crystal had done for her, in the way that Crystal was wanting.  It made me wonder just how many times I may have been wanting something from someone else that they were simply unable to give me.

I, on the other hand, was able to appreciate everything that Crystal had done to help Rachel and was able to understand the value of her effort to an even greater degree than even she was aware of.  

As I praised Crystal for the wonderful helper she had been, I saw her tears melt away into a smile and I knew that the praises of her mother were of far greater value to her.  I realized that is the same for us with God.  Although we search for the praise of others, nothing can satisfy us quite the same as praise from our Heavenly Father. 

Today, I was reminded that as we labor in love for our King our efforts may go unnoticed and unappreciated by others, but they are never overlooked or unrewarded by our Father!  On that final day of judgment, every tear of frustration we have cried will melt into an everlasting smile.  

“Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of the heart. At that time each will receive their praise from God.” 1 Corinthians 4:5

About the Author:

Tracy  Birtch currently lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia and is mom to Crystal, Jamie, and Rachel and a Pastors wife to Aaron.  Six years ago they planted a church which was an incredible adventure that brought them both some wonderful high and painful low experiences.  From this, Tracy has developed a heart to see the emotional wounds of others experience the full healing that God can bring. 

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