I can tell you within a 20 minute window what time the mail man will show up at my house everyday. I learned this because I now go home everyday on my lunch break just in time for the mail man to get there and bring me that days bounty of glorious treasures. I do this because about a month ago my wife and I launched a fundraising campaign to allow us to take a new position at a church in Colorado. We sent out over 150 letters to friends and family asking them to support us and most of the return correspondence is coming in the mail. We are just under half-way to our goal so my new found friendship with the mail carrier has become more and more “near and dear” as time passes.
Here’s the typical situation… I go home, open the mailbox, get excited because the mail is there, then I flip through it; which sounds a little like this: “Junk, junk, bill, junk, bill, junk, junk, SUPPORT LETTER, junk, junk, bill.” There are some days when it’s all junk. There are some days when it’s all bills. Then there are those days when someone smashed your mailbox to pieces the night before so the mail carrier holds your mail hostage! (True story!) This mail situation has definitely become a borderline obsession.
So here I am in my office waiting just a few more minutes so that I can run home and get the mail when it hits me: My expectancy for the mail shouldn’t be rivaling my expectancy for God. However, in all of His infinite wisdom God has yet again used this season to teach me something about myself, about Him, and about the enemy.
First, God has shown me that blessings come when we are willing to wade through the junk. What if I opened my mailbox, saw a piece of junk mail on top, and decided to throw out the whole stack because of it? I may be passing on a number of things that I need because I am not willing to sort the junk from the beneficial. In my life this looks like distractions. Should I watch all 12 episodes of Fuller House in one sitting or should I crawl around on the floor with my girls? I wish I could say that I never chose Netflix over them but then I’d be easily distracted and a liar! What distractions are you allowing to stand in the way of your blessings?
Second, I learned that I should expect God to show up everyday. The mailman brings me a new stack of envelopes every day. Sometimes there are great things in there, sometimes there are things I wish he’d lose on my behalf. However, I know he’s coming. Why would I put more trust in the USPS than in my Heavenly Father? Lamentations 3:22-23 says, “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” The mailman brings the good, the bad, and the ugly, yet I rush home to meet him regularly. God only brings newness, life, and mercies daily, yet I sometimes miss out because i don’t rush out to meet Him. Are you waiting on God daily?
Finally, I learned that the enemy will stop at nothing to rob you of your joy. Remember that smashed mailbox? It happened on a Sunday night… Easter Sunday as a matter of fact. We waited all day to see the mail carrier coming but never caught him. I ended up having to go to the post office to collect the mail because they don’t deliver it if the box is destroyed. In that day’s mail was a rather large contribution to my future position at the church. I told my family that the enemy had clearly run out of logical plans and had resorted to teenage style pranks to try and rob me of my joy and prevent me from moving forward. The truth is there is an enemy out there. He will attack you if you let him. But the Bible says in James 4:7, “Resist the devil and he will flee from you.” The more you resist him, the more foolish and desperate his attacks get. Are you one battle away from making the enemy throw his hands up and flee?
Today, I will still go home and get the mail as soon as I finish typing this. However, i’m going to do it through a different lens. I’m going to view it as my Father trying to communicate with me. I’m going to ask him, “What do you want to say to me today?” “What distractions do I need to turn off to hear you?” and, “Where do I need to resist the enemy?” If you ask these same questions with expectancy daily, I can assure you, His newness and mercies will flow out to you so much that you can’t contain them all!