Licking Trash Cans

There’s a baby at church who we affectionately call “Buttons.” She’s a precious, squishable toddler who went through an interesting phase last year of trying to lick any trash can within reach of her tiny hands.

So naturally her parents hid all the trash cans in the house, and kept the bathroom doors closed just in case she felt a similar compulsion towards toilets. The fact is, one day she won’t even consider licking trash cans, but until that day, her parents will have to keep them beyond her reach. She doesn’t know any better, so her parents have to know better for her.

It seems obvious to us that this baby’s parents are protecting her, but we don’t always see it that way when God does the same for us. Do we?

You see, God knows that you and I are going to be tempted to lick trash cans sometimes, so He closes the door on certain situations in our lives to protect us. I’m sure baby Buttons threw a temper tantrum or two when she was kept from a trashcan that she wanted to lick, but her parents lovingly stood firm and blocked her from getting to it. In a year or two, they won’t think twice about leaving her alone in a room with a trashcan or a toilet because they know she will be able to use these things in the way they were meant to be used. 

So how about you? Has God put something out of your reach that you wanted badly? Are you upset with Him because He won’t let you lick a trash can today?

Some of us stubbornly force doors open and lick the toilet anyway, and God will allow us to do it for a while. In the end, there’s regret. When we are not lined up with God’s will for our lives, we will not experience true peace or lasting joy. There may be an appearance of fulfillment and joy, but it’s fleeting and not the all-encompassing joy that God has intended for you.

God loves you more than you can imagine, and as long as you live He will continue to go ahead of you and close doors and move trash cans out of your reach. At the same time, He’ll open the right doors, and give you opportunities that are far better than the ones that you can dream up for yourselves. For those of you who are upset with Him for closing a door today, know that one day you’ll understand why He stopped you and you’ll thank Him. We have a God who knows the big picture when we can only see what’s right in front of us. He answers our prayers the way we would ask Him to answer them if we only knew what He knows.

Trust Him, He knows what He’s doing. And He’s doing it for your good.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and never lean on your own understanding. In all of your ways, acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths.  Proverbs 3:5-6

5 thoughts on “Licking Trash Cans

  1. SO GOOD and so convicting! Holy Spirit is definitely behind this one. Feeling so AWAKE wow and God is just so great.

  2. This is a work of non-fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents neither are products of the author’s imagination nor are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely intentional and factual.

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