Back in January I wrote a post about meaningful mishaps on the keyboard—typos with significance. Now, four months later, I’ve collected a few more.
I meant to type caring, but the screen showed daring. Actually, the two words can be used together in a meaningful way: Sometimes we must be daring in our caring.
My husband, Steve, is a generous tipper. He frequently dares to care with his wallet. Not that we have a lot of money to spare, but we’ve experienced time and again you can’t outgive God. His economy isn’t logical; it’s theological.
A few years ago Steve was traveling out-of-state every few months to visit his elderly parents. Each time he would stay at a bed and breakfast near the assisted living home. Steve became well-acquainted with the B & B manager and always left her a gracious tip.
In December of 2011, Steve’s dad graduated to heaven. He had served God well and been a mentor to many. At age ninety-three, he was looking forward to meeting Jesus face to face.
Since we’d be needing several days’ accommodation, Steve called T. to see if she might have a room available for us at the B & B—even though it was very short notice.
“I can accommodate you the first three nights, but that last night, we’re full,” she responded. “However! There is no reason you and Nancy can’t stay with me. My apartment is good-sized, and you’ll have your own suite. In fact, I insist!”
Would T. have made such a generous offer, if Steve had not been so gracious to her? Probably. T is a very giving woman herself. I do know Steve did not give those generous tips in order to receive.
But when we dare to care, God often augments the results.
Imagine my surprise to look at the screen and see, not long-standing faith as I’d intended, but song-standing faith.
Turns out, that is quite meaningful. Frequently a song will lift my spirit and affirm my faith. Take Chris Tomlin’s song, Our God. Imagine an energized congregation singing the chorus with passion and volume:
And if our God is with us,
Then what can stand against us?
And if our God is for us,
Then who could ever stop us?
Such an experience has a powerful effect. I find myself standing up straighter. The concerns on my mind fade in importance, and my heart fills with confidence. Yes, song-standing faith works wonders! I need to avail myself of the opportunity more often.
The word was supposed to be dailyness, referring to the humdrum routine that occupies more of our time than we’d like. Instead, here’s what I typed: dailymess.
M-m-m. Another matter that occupies more of our time than we’d like: the messes we have to clean up, the interruptions, the unexpected turns of events. Such moments generate frustration and raise blood pressure. Not good!
So what do we do when the daily-ness of our lives, which is challenging enough, becomes daily-mess?
To begin, song-affirming faith (Mishaps #2) will certainly help. Remember Paul and Silas, missionaries who traveled far and wide to tell others about Jesus? While visiting Philippi, they stumbled into an awful mess, and ended up in prison. For all they knew, they could be killed the next day. And yet at midnight, these two were praying and singing hymns to God (Acts 16:25).
They were accessing song-affirming faith to combat the mess—the unexpected turn of events in their lives.
And why were Paul and Silas in prison in the first place? They had been daring and caring (Mishap #1, above). They had helped a slave girl, enraged the owners, and were arrested. BUT! God intervened in a miraculous way. An earthquake opened the prison doors. Paul, Silas and the other prisoners could have escaped, but didn’t. As a result, the jailer wanted to know about this Jesus they’d been praying to and singing about. He wanted to know how he and his family could have eternal life. The daring and caring of Paul and Silas paid great dividends—more souls for the kingdom of heaven! (See Acts 16 for the whole incredible story.)
Daring and caring. Song-affirming faith. Both combat the daily-mess of life.
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Thank you, Father, for the affirmations you reveal through my keyboard mishaps: 1) You augment daring and caring to produce amazing results, and 2) Song-affirming faith ushers us into your presence where we experience your power and presence, and 3) You provide strength and perseverance to deal with the daily-mess of life.
Hallelujah! I give thanks to you with everything I’ve got! Your works are so great, worth a lifetime of study–endless enjoyment! Splendor and beauty mark your craft; your generosity never gives out, your miracles are your memorial. You are the God of Grace and the God of Love! (Taken from Psalm 111:1-4, The Message.)