Ann Farabee column — Pizza on trees?
By Ann Farabee
Teaching Sunday school to 6-8 year-olds was so much fun! I mean, how do you have greater moments in life than to have a child interrupt your well-planned lesson to ask you if there is Kool-Aid in heaven? The ensuing discussion led them to determine that God would give us pizza on trees if we wanted it.
We would begin class with prayer requests, and sometimes as I prayed aloud I would say, “God speak to us.”
But one day, I guess a little guy had heard that one time too many. He blurted out, “I don’t hear God!”
A girl in the class was not pleased with his interruption, so she yelled at him, “Why don’t you listen?”
After further — and calmer — discussion, it was determined that some of the ways God speaks to us are through others, through nature, through reading our Bibles, and in our hearts.
The heart concept was a tough one for them, since they were concerned about what they called the ‘Valentine-shaped’ object in their bodies being spoken to by God. We all eventually agreed that God speaking to our hearts meant that he spoke to us in our minds and in our spirits.
They definitely left class that day determined to start listening for God’s voice.
Isaiah 48:16 tells us that God’s message has been told clearly and plainly — not in secret.
Isaiah 48:17 tells us that God teaches us and leads us in the way we should go.
The first part of Isaiah 48:18 says, “O that thou hadst hearkened to my commandments!” It ended with an exclamation mark, too, so obviously it was spoken with emotion. My interpretation of it would be something like, “Why don’t you listen?”
How does listening to God’s commands help?
How would listening to God’s commands change a situation?
The last part of Isaiah 48:18 tells us:
We would have peace as a river.
We would have righteousness as the waves of the sea.
Peace as a river can mean an abundant full flowing river that spills over onto the banks with blessings of every kind.
Righteousness as the waves of the sea can mean unfailing, seemingly boundless strong but gentle movement, with goodness, fairness, and honor that cannot be measured.
I call those beautiful promises from God!
All we have to do is listen!
By the way, there may be pizza on trees in heaven. You never know…
Ann Farabee is a teacher, writer and speaker. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or annfarabee.com.
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