Friday, July 2, 2010

A Playground or a Pit?

When I was a child, we spent the days of summer playing outside like most kids USED to do. Once you went out the back door of my mom and dad’s house, you didn’t plan on coming back in for a while unless you were near death, otherwise you would hear the words “Keep that door shut, we’re not trying to cool the whole neighborhood!” or “Make up your mind, in or out, you’re lettin’ the flies in!” or “The next one that comes in is staying in!” Let me add – these phrases were not whispered in June Cleaver tone! Now that I’m a mother, I have heard the not-so-June Cleaver -tone come forth from my lips myself and completely understand why Mom sometimes locked us outside!

Really though, we stayed outside most of the time exercising our imaginations playing whatever we dreamed up (or whatever I dreamed up since I was the oldest!) I remember getting so upset though on Monday nights, because we would play outside until dark and then go inside only to find out we had played too long and missed Little House on the Prairie. I promise, I was the world’s biggest fan.

One particular summer, when I was probably nine or ten-years-old, we were over in our neighbors yard playing with our little neighbor friend. Her parents had been hard at work for several weeks planning to open a beauty salon in a little shop they had set up across her driveway. Being the little adventurers we were, we meandered over to the “Dream Salon” site and noticed there was this GIGANTIC hole dug in the ground behind the soon to be “Dream Salon”! I admit, it was all my idea, but everyone agreed that it would be sooo much fun to jump down in that hole to play. I’m not sure what we thought we were going to do down in this hole, there was nothing in it, but you know how kids are, we didn’t worry about the details. We just lived in the moment and jumped right in. When we got tired of playing in there and it came time to get out of the pit we had jumped into, the trouble began. Much to our surprise, no matter how hard we tried, we could not climb out. I tried hoisting my brother, my sister, and my neighbor up, since I was the tallest, but no one could reach far enough over the edge to pull themselves out. Just as panic set in we heard a loud noise, I could see just enough over the edge of that abyss we had found ourselves in to see it was a dump truck. He was headed toward us with a load of rock for that hole. We began to scream as loud as we could, clawing at the sides, trying to climb up unsuccessfully, tears streaming down our cheeks. I can still remember feeling my heart beating in my chest as if it were yesterday. I thought we would all die and it was all my fault.

Just as we were about to lose hope, a hand reached down into that pit to rescue us. We had been screaming so loudly in our panic that we never heard the truck stop and never realized that help was on the way. The man in the dump truck had heard us. I was never so glad to see a hand in my life. I remember being so relieved to be out of there, but I was surprised at my neighbor’s mom’s reaction. She had always been nice to us before, but she didn’t seem as overjoyed at our rescue as we did. Needless to say, we didn’t hang around long, suddenly we felt it was time to go home, putting this experience as far behind us as possible. Before we got back across that yard Momma knew about it, thank you Alexander Graham Bell! We were in trouble. Since I was the oldest, most of the lecture was directed at me and all I could think was how she was wasting her breath because I had been scared enough that I would never do something like that again. I had learned my lesson.

What we thought was a neat little playground ended up being a deep pit, a future septic tank, to be exact. Isn’t that how things in life often are? Something looks like a great idea, looks fun, new, exciting and throwing caution to the wind without a second thought, we jump right in. It doesn’t take long before we decide we are bored with this “playground” only to find there is no way out in our own strength from where we stand. We begin to scream so loudly for rescue from any source that comes by, that we don’t even notice the presence of our Savior’s hand reaching down offering to lift us out and set our feet on new ground.

Bless the Lord, O my soul;
And all that is within me, bless His holy name.
Bless the Lord, O my soul.
And forget none of His benefits;
Who pardons all your iniquities;
Who heals all your diseases;
Who redeems your life from the pit;
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion.
Psalms 103:1-4 (italics mine)

Amy Dotson, RPDOTK (Royal Princess Daughter Of The King)
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1 comment:

  1. Amy,

    Per your request, I have been considering your devotions, trying to determine which one is my 'favorite' for your upcoming workshop. The only problem... each day I have a new favorite. Your last four devotions have been written for me and have ministered directly to my heart. Nonetheless, if I have to choose just one, my vote has been narrowed down to Snoozing, primarily because that choice to 'snooze' is a lie from the enemy that tastes so good and is so prevalent. Your application examples at the end were chilling as I could here my own heart whisper "just one more snooze."

    Thank you for taking the time to commune with God so that your heart is in line with His Will, allowing you to express and share such beautiful truths about the awesome nature of our Lord and (oh) how He loves us.

    You are a blessing!


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