A Toothpick

Have you ever needed a toothpick? Have you ever gone looking for them in the grocery store? It’s like trying to find a needle in a haystack. I usually end up asking where they are. It’s probably because we don’t buy them every day, and they are small.

Jim and I were shopping recently, and I was following behind him with the cart. All of a sudden a box of tooth picks seemed to shoot off the shelf and fall on the floor behind him. I thought maybe he had knocked it, but it didn’t seem so. And he didn’t think so. I went to pick them up and he said, “Maybe we are supposed to get some toothpicks?” Maybe we were, so I tossed a box of them into the cart. When we got home I put the toothpicks in the pantry, and haven’t thought of them since...until tonight. We were just finishing up dinner and our granddaughter, Kylie, asked if we had any toothpicks? Really? Uh, yes, and I know right where they are. Of course I shared the story of the flying toothpick box with everyone at the table. Seriously, can God be this involved in our lives? It doesn’t get much smaller than that, or less important, unless you are the one needing the toothpick, I guess.

With the big things that are happening in our world these days, is God really interested in such small details? Tragically, France has more than its share of large problems. I also mentioned at dinner that I have watched more news in the last week than I have in a long time. It reminded me of the week of 9/11. When our son was nearing the end of his battle with cancer in the Fall of 2001, he watched those events with us. He said at that time, “Maybe it’s not such a bad time to be leaving.” I hope he hasn’t looked back at this world since he left here 14 years ago on the 14th of November. Jesus has provided a much better place for him than this fallen world right now. Heaven is the place all believers in Jesus can look forward to.

I heard something this morning from our pastor and it wasn’t some deep theological message, or maybe it was. I took notice of it. He said that even the small detail of an earlobe has its importance. He knows this because he is missing an earlobe due to some surgery he had on his ear. He said without that earlobe, wind gets in that ear, and water from the shower gets in that ear. I was intrigued. Really? It makes that much difference? When it says in Psalm 139 that God knits us together, we can know He pays attention to each tiny detail.

So, when Searching And Noticing the Divine, I believe God is pleased when small things as well as big things get our attention. Toothpicks and earlobes count! Huge rescue efforts in Paris count! God is watching over it all. He is concerned about it all. He has a plan in it all from before the beginning of time, and His plan includes His Son, Jesus. We have much to be thankful for!

You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.
You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.
Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely.
Psalm 139:2-4 (NIV)