“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged." –Deuteronomy 31:8
~My pet raccoon, Ricky, was addicted to sugar. My older brother and I had him as a pet in the spring of 1981 when I was only in 1st grade (read Ricky's full story in my previous blog). Ricky, like all raccoons, was very good with his front paws—he used them like hands. I still have vivid memories of Ricky washing all of his food in a little water bowl that we kept in his cage. Whatever we gave to him, he would run over to his bowl and rub it in his little paws dunking it in the water over and over. One time, my brother and I gave him a sugar cube. His addiction to sugar had been created through his many exposures to sugary foods such as birthday cake, Sweet Tarts, etc., but this was his first actual sugar cube. He quickly grabbed it from our hands and raced over to his water bowl with great excitement, as if he knew that the cube he now possessed was the sweet elixir he so craved in its purest form. As he was scrubbing it clean, it dissolved in the water. He was so confused as he searched and searched for it in his paws. Then he looked in the water bowl and it was gone. Still puzzled, he ran over to us and we gave him another one. He ran back to his water bowl and washed it thoroughly again, and as before, it disappeared. We just laughed and laughed. We felt badly for teasing him like that, so we eventually gave him some Sweet Tarts to make up for it!
|Ricky the Raccoon--Spring 1981|
~Ricky searched and searched and frantically looked for the sugar cube and it was not there! Or was it? You may be faced with struggles and challenges, and sometimes you may feel completely alone. You may feel abandoned by God. You may ask Him why He would leave you. Sometimes you need God’s sweetness, but you feel, like Ricky did, that it has disappeared somewhere in the water bowl of your life. Do you know what God would tell you? “I am here. I have not and will never leave you. Just drink the water, my child. It will be the sweetest water you have ever tasted!” Had Ricky drank the deliciously sweet water, he would have realized that the sugar cube was there all along. Just like God is always there for you even when you think He’s not! This week, don’t be afraid or discouraged but instead be bold and courageous, and trust that God will never leave you. He will always be near you, so move forward in faith and please drink and enjoy the sweet water of life!