We have been blessed with a wonderful new addition to our family. Samuel Carter Safford is my grandson. Yes, it is hard for me to believe that I am an grandfather - I am too young to be a grandfather!!
Needless to say, he is a joy for my wife and I. We get to see him regularly and are enjoying watching him grow.
I was thinking this morning of our relationship to our Heavenly Father, and I was reminded of something that Sam did a little while ago.
As most of you know - I travel a lot. I get to go to other countries and serve with amazing people. I get to see some unbelievable places, and I get to eat a variety of foods. AND, as I return, I get to bring things home with me from these cultures and share them with my family.
In April, I returned home with a drum for Sam. I was excited about giving it to him, and was looking forward to his response as he received such a "cool" gift. Again, in June, I returned with some "Chiky" cookies for Sam, and again I was excited to see how he responded.
His response was a lesson to me. I thought he would take the drum and play with it. I thought he would get all excited about the cookies and want to eat them. However, both times, he looked at my gift and reached beyond them to be with me. He wanted me - not my stuff! He missed relationship with me while I was gone, and longed to be with me again.
Yes, Sam is young - he will learn - the stuff is so much cooler than I am. But in the meantime, I will enjoy his enthusiasm to see me.
His response made me think about God. Remember when we first accepted the good news of the gospel. God's wrath for my sin was poured out on His Son, and I was given Christ's righteousness in place of my sinful heart. God did this so I could have a relationship with Him. That's amazing!! And when I was first introduced to it, the greatest gift God gave me was Himself. That was all that I wanted. That was all that I needed. God was/is sufficient.
But as years go by, it seems that I get enamored with the gifts that God can provide and forget that He is the greatest gift of all. I even go so far as to pursue things that are contrary to Him and His nature and I seek to find satisfaction in them. Oh, foolish person that I am, what greater gift is there than to be called a son of God.
God help me to see you again as I did at first. Help me to find my pleasure and satisfaction in you and you alone. Help me, as Sam has taught me, to pursue you first and enjoy your gifts as they were intended - a reflection of your love for me.