Have you ever gone on a God Hunt? A God Hunt begins when you teach yourself to look for God’s hand at work in the every day occurrences of your life. Here’s one of my personal God Hunt Sightings:
Apart from seeing old friends we hadn’t seen for nearly 40 years, or being reminded of the value of our long-term ministry (a truth many of us are apt to forget with the passing of time); apart from the fact that our whole family gathered themselves together for the first time in seven years, there were surprising add-on benefits that came from our 50th Wedding Anniversary Celebration—cards with lovely messages and words of thanks, and sometimes monetary gifts—$50 for 50 years of marriage seemed to be a trend.
One couple had five Gideon Bibles placed in hotel rooms in our names—what a nice gesture! Others included restaurant or event coupons (tickets to Goodman Theatre in Chicago, for instance).
The week after our 50th, my husband announced that we were taking Cirilo Leon out for pizza to celebrate his birthday. Cirilo is from Oaxaca, Mexico and migrates seasonally to garden for clients along Hawthorne Lane and Prince Crossing and Indian Knoll Road, the streets that are close to our home. For the last two summers he has lived in our basement guest room. So we took Cirilo out to Gino’s East for deep-dish Chicago pizza and “paid” for the meal with 50th Anniversary Coupons.
David had also reserved on my calendar the fact that we were going to spend one whole day in the city of Chicago with a young couple from South Africa who are stepping into a crucial leadership position in that country. Because we love “our” city, and because it seems to become more and more beautiful with the passing years, we enjoy showing it off to friends, old and new, who have only visited it while passing through O’Hare Airport or on quick, cursory trips. A rule-of-thumb we have learned through the years is: You should always try to see a city through the eyes of someone who loves it. My husband gladly provides (no matter how busy he is) the “David Mains’ Overview Tour of Chicago With Guided Commentary.”
We ended the excursion (on a beautiful sunny June day) at Maggiano’s, an established Italian eatery on the near north side. Again, we treated our friends to a meal using up our 50th Anniversary Coupons.
Eating together, listening to each other’s stories, I had the passing thought, How wonderful to have gifts that allow us to give gifts. Some presents just keep on giving. Our coupons would not have been nearly as meaningful to us if we had used them only for our own pleasure. Their meaning was doubled in the fellowship of sharing.
This certainly is one of the principles of Christian grace: God pours mercy and fullness and forgiveness and kindness into the lives of His children. And, if they “get it” instead of hoarding the bounty, they pass it along. From His gracious expansive unlimited favor, we are made replete with enough generosity to share again and again.
How pleased our friends who gave us gift cards would be if they knew they had doubled our joy—gifts for ourselves and gifts for others.
I spy God!
Award-winning author Karen Mains has long had an interest in spiritual formation and the obedient Christian walk. She has written about the God Hunt in her book by the same name, The God Hunt: The Delightful Chase and the Wonder of Being Found. A hardback copy can be ordered from Mainstay Ministries for $10.00 plus $4.95 shipping and handling. Contact Karen at firstname.lastname@example.org and she will be happy to autograph a copy for you.
Karen continues to write content for her Christian blog, “Thoughts-by-Karen-Mains.” In so doing, she desires to touch the lives of Christian women and men and help them find ways to walk closer with the Lord Jesus Christ. In addition, through silent retreats, spiritual teaching, women’s retreats, Christian vacation opportunities, and other ministry activities, Karen helps each Christian woman and man receive vital spiritual food.
Through her Hungry Souls ministry, Karen serves as a spiritual coach to many Christian women and men, and teaches a mentor-writing class. And, through the Global Bag Project, she is working to develop a network of African women who sew exquisite cloth reusable shopping bags, Africa bags. This micro-finance women opportunity helps provide a much-needed sustainable income for struggling African families. For more information on this critically important project, please click here.
For decades, Karen and her husband, David, have served God through religious communications—radio, television, and print publication. They are the co-authors of the Kingdom Tales Trilogy: Tales of the Kingdom, Tales of the Resistance, and Tales of the Restoration. To find many valuable resources for pastors and congregations at the Mainstay Ministries main website, please click here.
Likewise, pastors will find special resources to help them prepare effective, life-transforming Sunday sermons by visiting David Mains’ website by clicking here.