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:
My four-year-old granddaughter, Eliana, is being raised bilingually. She actually has three languages—Spanish, English, and Eliana. When in doubt she resorts to babble. Consequently, I only catch about one-third of what she enthusiastically reports to me.
To five of my grandchildren (Caitlyn, Landis, Nathanael, Elias and Nehemiah), I am Nina. To two of my grandchildren (Joscelyn and Ayden), I am Nonnie. Eliana started out by calling me Meena. Frankly, I have enough trouble remembering which grandchild calls me what. So, I worked hard to teach Elle that my grandma nomenclature began with an N, not an M. “Nah-nah-nah-nah-nah Nina, “ I would demonstrate. And she would answer, “Nah-nah-nah-nah-nah Meena.” It was just hard getting that M out of her head once it had taken lodging there.
However, last weekend I noticed that Eliana was calling me Nina, emphasizing the N, to my great pleasure. “Yeahh!” I shouted. “Great job, Eliana!” And then to be sure, “Who am I?”
“Nina,” she replied.
I am learning that when I have the little ones over—Nehemiah, age two, and Eliana, age four—the better part of wisdom is to put everything away and just park myself in the same room and play with them. This is not the time for me to make progress with tasks at hand.
Nehemiah gets absorbed in his toys, but Eliana explores the house. Her great curiosity drives her to open doors, investigate cupboards, etc. She leaves a remarkable trail behind her wherever her explorations have led.
Take the downstairs bath, for instance. The water glass, the soap dish, and my dried arrangement above the toilet had all been plundered. Soggy water sat in the glass, which had been stirred with a stalk pulled from the basket. Some random toy animals guarded this mess. There were hydrangea droppings on the floor, on the toilet seat, and on the rug.
Or, take the Advent Calendar on the table in front of the fireplace. Where did she find the scissors and how did she cut up that cardboard cover? I decided to leave the clean up for the next morning.
Instead, I took Eliana downstairs and we began to play “Monster-Meena.” This is where the grandmother stretches out under a blanket among the pillows on the couch, then pulls the cover over her head. The child approaches, discovers the grandmother who swoops her up onto the couch, tickling and shoveling her gently and roughly (yes it can be done) against the cushion. Much whooping and giggling ensues.
Sometimes we can’t make our mind up whether or not God is Monster-God. Because of our language development, we go around misnaming Him “nah-nah-nah-nah-nah-nah Meena.” Other people know Him by other more correct names. But, we’re sort of stuck with a childlike mispronunciation. If the occasion warrants and we find time to roughhouse on the soft couch among the pillows, to get close to Him in a playful kind of way, we may discover that He is so much more than our feeble attempts to describe Him can possibly achieve.
“The chief end of man is to enjoy God and love him forever.” —Westminster Catechism.
Have you had time to play with God this season? Enjoying God enough leads to loving Him forever. You may not only begin calling Him by another name, you may even hear His pet name for you.
“Who am I?” is a questions we humans wrestle with most of our lives. It is been my experience that knowing God better helps me answer that question well.
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.