I stared at the improbable pile of drinks.
Dr. Pepper, Root Beer, Bubly, Polar, Ice–more drinks than John and I could consume in a year.
They’re not for us. We don’t drink soda.
We do, however, have a parade of grands and their friends that come through here daily to choose what they will imbibe at the moment. They don’t have to ask; they feel at home enough to get what they need.
My kids tease me about this. We never bought this stuff when they were growing up. It wasn’t in the budget, and soda is bad for the teeth.
At least, that’s what I told them.
Now, after soccer practice or when they get home from school, our home is a destination. I love that their friends feel comfortable coming in and grabbing a drink. They’ll often sit awhile and talk–about life, politics (these are teenagers who are hearing many things from a variety of people), and dreams. It gives me space to enjoy them and their thoughts.
And not worry about dental bills.
We’ve learned what they like. We don’t buy random drinks–that really doesn’t satisfy any need other than wasting money. Their tastes vary; sometimes there is something new that piques their interest, and they ask if we could get it. Sometimes they tire of what’s here, and we stop putting those drinks in the refrigerator.
They’re fascinated that we listen to them and buy what they like.
This isn’t a big deal. Yes, it’s a bit of an investment, but in the long run, the investment is in the grands and their friends. My kids didn’t really have any grandparents growing up; for one reason or another, we never connected much with them. We wanted to be those grandparents who chose to impact the grands positively.
Not all are in town. Some of the grands are in Colorado, Pennsylvania, and Washington D.C. We try to FaceTime with them as much as possible. We want them each to know how very much we love them.
Lavish love. When our kids were little, we didn’t have much to give them but our time. We gave what we had, choosing them over convenience or stuff.
God does that for us. He loves lavishly; He has given us all we could ever need for a life of hope. “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! For that is what we are!” 1 John 3:1
To be loved as children of a perfectly loving Father who knows our every dark corner is love indeed.
God doesn’t look disinterestedly at His creation and choose to leave us to our own devices. He has engaged in love, giving His best so we could experience His hope. He has taken on the one thing that has separated us from love and forgiveness–our own brokenness–and offered a solution. Lavish and beautiful, giving His best in spite of our worst.
Love is what we long for; being accepted and valued for who we are and not for what we do is a gift.
All we need to do is receive it.
I guarantee it will satisfy.