When I’m with my nephew, I bribe him.
There, I said it. I give him anything he wants.
You want a fudgesicle? OK!
How about fruit snacks?
Whatever he wants or grunts at, I get it for him. I’m not just spoiling the kid… I want him to remember where the good stuff came from.
When I was little, Granny Evelyn, who wasn’t really our Granny, took care of us.
There was always ice cream, popsicles, and fudge bars in the freezer. I couldn’t wait to go to her house. She also let us have coffee with lots of cream, put rollers in her hair and put tape all over her wrinkly skin to give her a facelift.
But I also knew I could talk to Granny. I knew, if there was something bothering me, she was a safe place.
I’ve tried to do the same thing with my nephews and niece. I want them to know that their Cookie (what they call me) loves them and that they can always come to me no matter what happens in life.
Even if they lose their way, get into trouble, or life gets crazy, I want them to know I’ll help be a steady rock they can stand on. I can be someone they can depend on and trust. I can be someone who can help, if they remember.
In the book of Genesis, it’s been two years since Joseph interpreted the cupbearer’s and baker’s dreams. The cupbearer forgot him when he met with the pharaoh, so Joseph was still in prison.
But then, the pharaoh has a dream and searches the land for someone to interpret it. He knew it meant something and was very troubled by it.
He needed to know its interpretation.
But none, NONE, of the magicians or soothsayers in the land could tell him what it meant (kind of like those people who claim they can heal people, but choose not to go into a children’s hospital…)
But all of a sudden, the cupbearer remembered. He recalled what he good man Joseph did for him. Even though he had gone his own way, he realized he knew someone who could help and told the pharaoh the whole story.
“Then the chief cupbearer said to Pharaoh, ‘Today I remember my faults. Pharaoh was angry with his servants, and he put me and the chief baker in the custody of the captain of the guards. He and I had dreams on the same night; each dream had its own meaning. Now a young Hebrew, a slave of the captain of the guards, was with us there. We told him our dreams, he interpreted our dreams for us, and each had its own interpretation. It turned out just the way he interpreted them to us: I was restored to my position, and the other man was hanged.’ Then Pharaoh sent for Joseph, and they quickly brought him from the dungeon. He shaved, changed his clothes, and went to Pharaoh.” (Genesis 41:9-14)
An act of kindness was remembered. The cupbearer has gone his own way, but when there was a need, he knew who he could turn to.
You know, Jesus is that same kind of friend. No matter what we’ve done, where we’ve been, or the choices we’ve made, He’s right there waiting for us. But God does something even better – He actively pursues us.
He gives us opportunity after opportunity to turn from our sins and back to Him. And haven’t you noticed that you don’t have that far to run back to Him? He’s literally right there waiting.
Oh friends! My heart aches for you to know, love and trust Christ with every detail of your life. Living for Jesus, with his spirit as your guide, is the most beautiful life – it is the abundant life (John 10:10).
Remember what He’s done for you.
Remember that He is your steady rock on which you can stand.