Friday, March 18, 2011

Reading the Mail

Where mail is concerned, I am a girl caught between two worlds.

In my daily habits I find myself loathing snail mail and seriously annoyed by the encumbrance of email when a simple text will get my answer faster.  I use the internet to pay my bills, and even my gradebook and lesson plans are all online.  I love the ability to get things done and turned in from anywhere.

Truthfully though, my use of technology is somewhat encouraged by the fact that I don't do a good job of reading my snail mail.... some of you are thinking, she doesn't read her email either.... to which you would be right as my email, even when I open it tends to go in one eye and out the other.... but I digress......

It's confession time..... when dealing with snail mail I literally open my mail box once a week, haul it up stairs, skim through the envelopes that look as if they need opening,
(anything that I can't do online)
 and then throw away EVERY advertisement.  Everything else goes into a box to await shredding....that may never come.....This causes problems because I've missed important stuff all because in my quick scan of envelopes, sometimes I miss things that I would otherwise attend to like parties and appointments and even one time a jury summons......  So

Today I read the mail.

It was sort of a novel experience for me.... I kind of enjoyed ripping into the envelop and reading the invitations and form letters.  Did you know that the smell of the glue they use on envelopes has changed? Did you know they put coupons in your mail?  And that you can take them with you to the store and get discounts?  And guess what?  I've been invited to a baby shower and I didn't even know my friend was expecting!!!!  

All the other stuff in my mail box could be described as adminis-trivia.... bills, insurance stuff and such.....I already know that for each piece of mail received there is a typical response, either an RSVP, or payment for services rendered, but a response is always necessary.  Since I actually READ the mail,  I know what my response should be.  Upon the occasion that I am the sender instead of the recipient of snail mail or otherwise, I know what response I expect and hope for.

As it turns out, just like we mail things with expectations of a response,  the Lord sends His word to us with an outcome already in mind.

10 "As the rain and the snow
   come down from heaven,
and do not return to it
   without watering the earth
and making it bud and flourish,
   so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,
11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
   It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
   and achieve the purpose for which I sent it." Isaiah 55:10-11 

My prayer is that we wouldn't be so dismissive that we try to put the words from the Lord away to be dealt with later, especially when He offers such a compelling invitation... , an appointment, a holy summons!

1 “Come, all you who are thirsty,
   come to the waters;
and you who have no money,
   come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
   without money and without cost.
2 Why spend money on what is not bread,
   and your labor on what does not satisfy?
Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good,
   and you will delight in the richest of fare.
3 Give ear and come to me;
   listen, that you may live.
I will make an everlasting covenant with you,
   my faithful love promised to David.
4 See, I have made him a witness to the peoples,
   a ruler and commander of the peoples.
5 Surely you will summon nations you know not,
   and nations you do not know will come running to you,
because of the LORD your God,
   the Holy One of Israel,
   for he has endowed you with splendor.” Isaiah 55:1-5

He offers an everlasting covenant and then He tells us how to  "RUN DON"T WALK! " toward receiving His gift of promised faithfulness.  

6 Seek the LORD while he may be found;
   call on him while he is near.
7 Let the wicked forsake their ways
   and the unrighteous their thoughts.
Let them turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on them,
   and to our God, for he will freely pardon. Isaiah 55:6-7

One of the few types of bills I don't remind receiving at all are the type that say "you pay $0.00".  Sometimes I know they are coming, and sometimes they are surprise but they never cease to cause me to read and re-read the letter because I rarely believe that it's possible.... there must be some mistake.  When it all checks out and I find out that it is legitimate.... those small "happy dances" just about make my day. These experiences are nothing compared to the huge "happy dance" that is a life fully redeemed.  

12 You will go out in joy
   and be led forth in peace;
the mountains and hills
   will burst into song before you,
and all the trees of the field
   will clap their hands.
13 Instead of the thornbush will grow the juniper,
   and instead of briers the myrtle will grow.
This will be for the LORD’s renown,
   for an everlasting sign,
   that will endure forever.” Isaiah 55:12-13

I pray that our lives would become more responsive to the Lord and that in our "every days" our lives would bear evidence of all that the Lord does and who He is.  

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