“Mommy, the playground!!!! Yay!!” Almost every time we leave our subdivision, we pass this playground. There’s nothing overly special about this playground…accept one thing- we’ve never played in it. You see, this seemingly “regular” playground, with the regular slides, regular swings, and regular climbing structures has a huge gate surrounding it and a locked door. The door is only accessible via a code…which we do not have and may never have. This is a limited access playground. It sucks as a Mom driving past this “regular” park knowing that my super special kids can’t play in it.
The funny thing is, I think that my kids get more excited about the idea of playing than actually playing there. And what really amazes me is that they are totally ok with us driving by and saying “Hi” to the playground…So you know this got me thinking!
Here I am an adult woman, that goes around and sees other peoples “playgrounds” and question God as to why I can’t have access to a “playground” like that too! God, why can’t I have a perfect house like that? God why can’t I have more money like them? God, can my hair have perfect curls like that too? God why can’t I be as creative as them? God, why am I not able to travel like that?
It all comes down to accessibility. My focus on other’s access to their blessings causes me to have less contentment with my own access that God has granted me, and only me. We all have “playgrounds” that we pass or see and wonder, why can’t I?
Around this time of year, everyone is searching for “the perfect” gift. That one gift that your child wants so bad and if he doesn’t get it, they will pretty much die! The gift that is at the very top of their Christmas Wish List. The gift that is limited to only a certain quantity during this holiday season. So what do we do as parents? We go and do whatever we possibly can to get that gift! “Oh, my baby is going to get this present, even if it kills me!” We have all seen the news broadcast where grown adults are literally fighting for that one last Elmo( even though we all know, that same toy will be overstocked in about 5 hours after Christmas). The things we do for our kids…
This is why being unable to access that “regular” playground got to me so much. Has the thought crossed my mind one or two times to just jump the fence and let them in? I will never tell, lol!
Being the loving Father that God is, He spoke to me about that park and about all that parents go through to obtain that “gotta- have -it -gift” for our kids. He reminded me that all the hoops, sacrifices, struggles, money, and time spent to obtain that one gift for your special kids or to access that special “playground” doesn’t even compare to what He has done and will do for us. Like looking at an ocean, God’s love is never-ending and limitless( does it amaze anyone else that all of that water just comes to a gentle stop at one of the most lightweight materials- sand and just rolls on back. Amazing!)
All that we do for our kids is to show in some very small way the unconditional love that we have for them that will never be able to be measured. God loves each of us more than we can love our kids, which is so hard to believe, because what doesn’t show love more than considering jumping a gazillion foot fence to let your kids play in the off -limits playground or fight that sweet little elderly lady to get that one last Tickle Me Elmo? Right?!
God has specific “playgrounds” or blessings in store that are just for you! Johnny and Judy may have an amazing “playground” from the outside looking in but once you gain access, you realize that their playgrounds are just so-so(shrugs shoulders). It’s just alright because it was not meant for you, it wasn’t the answer to your prayers, it wasn’t what you needed at that time.
So as we gather around the Christmas tree or a freshly lit fireplace in a few days to celebrate the birth of Jesus and to pass out those special gifts to each other, remember what those gifts symbolize… other than the fact that you love your kids pretty much more than anyone can ever love somebody and that you are the best parent ever(high five!)…that this precious baby, named Jesus was born to bare our sins and to make God more accessible- no code required. Unlimited access.
This is my prayer for you this Christmas and into the New Year…
“17 I pray that Christ will live in your hearts because of your faith. I pray that your life will be strong in love and be built on love. 18 And I pray that you and all God’s holy people will have the power to understand the greatness of Christ’s love—how wide, how long, how high, and how deep that love is. 19 Christ’s love is greater than anyone can ever know, but I pray that you will be able to know that love. Then you can be filled with everything God has for you.” Ephesians 3:16-19 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)
We all can have unlimited access to the ultimate “playground!” We just need to believe that God loves us, that He gave His only Son for our sins, and surrender our lives to God. Access granted.
Now excuse me as I go discipline my “special gifts” for the hundredth time as they jump in their beds like it’s a playground!(sigh, what can I say, my kids love to play, even when it’s supposed to be naptime…)