If you were at the launch of the REVIVE Women’s Propel small group meeting, you have already heard this story. Sorry about that, but it’s been on my heart lately and keeps popping back up, so I feel the need to share it again.
Due to my husband’s job, we have moved a fair amount. It’s okay, we are all pretty adventurous and like the challenge, but with that comes quite a bit of “giving things we have come to love, up.”
As we were packing up our house in Germany for the move to Maryland, we started selling furniture and giving away old toys that we knew we didn’t need or want. (Quite frankly we were worried a little about being over our weight limit!) Everything was fine until it came to one special item in the kitchen: my small little Ikea kitchen island. Kody said it had to go, there was no need for it in the new house. In his eyes, it was a no-brainer. The new house would have a bigger and better island, but my heart did backflips.
No. Just No.
Listen, for years I had wanted a kitchen island with a pot rack hanging over it, just like in Country Living Magazine. That little kitchen was exactly how I wanted it. My friends and family stood around that little island and laughed and cried over cupcakes and all manner of delicious baked goods. I tried and failed to make my Grannie Dot’s doughnuts there! I also stood there with my mom and made apple cobbler from the apples that grew on the trees in the backyard. There was a dent in the side from when the pot rack fell in the middle of the night and I thought we were in the middle of a drive by shooting! I just couldn’t let it go.
Obviously I was trying to hang on to those memories and a place I had made home. Even after a week of talking about it and the reasons I wanted to keep it, it was still hard. Kody explained over and over that the new house would have a built-in island and I should just take some pictures of the old one and let it go. I cried.
I ended up giving it away, but it cost the poor lady that came and picked it up. I gave her a whole sob story, told her countless tales about what went on around it and what it had meant to me. She tried to pay me for it just to get me to shut up so she could leave. I cried.
When we built the new house, it did come with a kitchen island. Boy, did it! It might be the biggest one you’ve ever seen. Seriously, it’s the size of a mattress. When I first saw it, yep, I cried.
I’ve stood there and laughed and cried with my best friend. I’ve perfected the chocolate chip cookie there (according to my son, and he’s the only one that counts in that department). I can paint a project, cook a meal, and have a full 500-piece puzzle set up — ALL AT THE SAME TIME!
Bigger and Better.
So much bigger and so much better.
Then the Lord asked him “What is that in your hand?”
“A shepherd’s staff,” Moses replied.
“Throw it down on the ground,” the Lord told him. So Moses threw down the staff, and it turned into a snake! — Exodus 4:2-3 (NLT)
Don’t you just love how God works?
Look at Moses. That staff was all he knew. For years, he roamed around using that staff to protect his flock of sheep and himself. That was how he made a living. His identity.
God asked him let go of all of it, so that he could show him bigger and better.
I had to let go of that small thing, so that I could get the bigger, better thing that was waiting for me. At the time, just like with Moses, it was all I knew. Letting go and putting my trust into God was really hard, but just look at what was waiting for me.
What are you holding on to? What can you let go of?
If you don’t throw down your staff, it will forever remain a staff. If you keep holding on to that little island, you won’t get to enjoy the bigger island with the granite top. But if you have the courage to throw the staff down and let the island go, God will take it and change it with his miraculous power into something bigger for His Glory.
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Staci Pruitt has been attending Calvary Grace with her family since the summer of 2014. She owns a photography business called Simply Taken Portraits (simplytakenportraits.com) where her vast array of creativity is on display through her impressionable storytelling with a camera. Staci also has a blog on her photography site. Her creative juices are now being put to use as the architect of Calvary Grace’s Web site while being an administrator of the church’s Facebook page.