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 everyday occurrences of your life. Here’s one of my personal God Hunt Sightings:
Many of my friends are not gardeners and since my gardens have reached the point of burgeoning profligacy it is both a joy and necessity to share the abundance of my perennial plants with them. This is work, of course, but a kind of educational accomplishment, because a certain amount of tutoring is necessary for those who don’t have a green thumb (or much of a desire to achieve one) but nevertheless, can’t stand the sight of a weedy patch.
Margaret had given me a large armoire that was crowding movement in her laundry room. It was perfect for the spare room downstairs because it could hold a medium-sized television set, clothes and extra bedding. Three of us moved the huge thing down the basement stairs and it looked great against the freshly stained rough-sawn cedar siding. In return, I had promised to help Margaret put in a garden by her garage door. “This looks so ugly,” my friend had explained. “My poor neighbors. What must they think when they look this way?”
Now what I am wondering about was why this project gave me so much joy. It was hard work on a hot summer’s day. It took most of the morning; David cultivated the soil with my small soil-tiller (I can lift and operate it; I just can’t get it started), then Margaret and I spent a pleasant hour at the nursery buying some $180 of sun-loving plants. Because it was so hot that afternoon, I decided to dig out transplants from my garden after 5:00, which I did, becoming muddy and sweaty in the process. A good decision, because when I reached Margaret’s house the sun was now casting a shadow from the house of the new bed and we worked in comparative comfort. But let me emphasize the word “work”—no gardening task is easy; they all require kneeling, digging, pushing, pulling, hauling, dumping, shoveling, hoeing, watering (which is always sloppy resulting in mud on clothes, shoes, hands, face and arms).
So why was I so happy to spend the better part of a day doing all this for a friend? I think it is a joy to share out of our bounty these gifts with people who appreciate receiving them. I think this feeling expresses much of what it is like to be God; He bountifully shares out of His fullness with those of us who are empty. He gardens the world and shares harvest and produce from the good earth with those of us open to receive the gifts from His hand.
“See that you also excel in the grace of giving … For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.”
—2 Corinthians 8:7b, 9
Sharing what we have (even when it includes work) is a way of partaking in the generous nature of God’s benevolent character. For some reason, that feels good; it feels really good.
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.