It was December when we visited the beautiful country of New Zealand. Christmastime, to be exact. I knew that New Zealanders had reverse seasons from those who live in the northern hemisphere, and this was precisely why New Zealand was my number one choice of where to go. I wanted and expected warm temperatures!
But somehow, it never registered in my brain that this would also mean blooming trees, baby birds, an abundance of flowers, and – grass!
Now normally I rejoice at the first signs of grass each Spring, and to be honest, as we circled Auckland for a landing, I was delighted to look out the airplane window and see the rolling carpets of green! Wow! Green grass at Christmas time was more than I had even hoped for!
But what I had forgotten was that grass and I have never been on good terms. When the snows melt every year and the grass begins to green up, my eyes start to itch, my sinuses fill up with phlegm, my throat begins to close over, I develop a cough, I begin to feel lightheaded, and I am plagued by a general sense of malaise. You see, I am 4+ allergic to grass!
How could I have forgotten such a violent reaction?
Because for the past 5 years I have taken a series of allergy shots each Spring. These are effective for about 6 months, just enough to get me through the Spring and Summer months! As a result, I have not suffered any of the above-listed symptoms in 5 years! In essence, I forgot that I was even allergic to grass, and I was beginning to question whether I needed to keep taking the shots!
My memory was jolted however, the moment I stepped foot off that plane, and by the time we had changed terminals for our connector flight to Dunedin on the South Island, my body was already giving me those telltale signs: There was grass around, and it wasn’t happy!
That’s when I realized that I had been taking my allergy shots for granted. Because I hadn’t been feeling horrible allergy symptoms, I had begun to doubt that I was even allergic to grass!
Isn’t it the same with God? He promises us utmost joy, protection, happiness, freedom from worry, etc. And when we do submit 100% to Him, we receive these things. But after awhile, don’t we begin to take Him for granted? “Oh, life is good! I’m happy because I’m lucky enough to have a good family and a great job. Nothing can touch me!” And we start to take risks.
I doubt that any of us actually cognitively THINK these things, but friends, when you start to take the blessings of God for granted, you are setting yourself up for a December grass-allergy experience! A reality check! You can rest assured that something will be coming down that will wake you up and remind you of what you really are by yourself!
Fortunately for me, I had some Reactin in my bags. It helped calm my very unhappy nose, and I was able to enjoy my little break from winter.
In the same way, God is always there for us as well, ready and waiting for us to return and surrender ourselves once again to Him. And He’s ready and waiting to once again bestow upon us the blessings He has for each of us.
The Bible warns us against becoming “lukewarm”: “I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm – neither hot nor cold – I am about to spit you out of my mouth.” (Rev 3:15-16 NIV)
I believe that whenever we begin to take God and His blessings for granted, we become “lukewarm”, and I don’t know about you, but I don’t want God to “spit” me out of His “mouth”! Let’s stop taking Him for granted! Let’s spend time today contemplating His blessings, remembering what He’s done for us, and rededicating our lives to Him!
Oh. I am happy to say that as soon as Spring started to show it’s welcome head in the Northern Hemisphere this year, I began my round of allergy shots. As a result, I was able to tolerate the lovely green grass that abounded in Canada this Summer!
Lyn Chaffart , Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two teens, Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, and Scriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, www.scripturalnuggets.org , with Answers2Prayer Ministries, www.Answers2Prayer.org .