Grocery Lists

I hate this.

The pantry doors stood wide open. I was down on my knees, peering into the dark recesses of the bottom shelf, opening and closing containers.

“Now, should I get more XYZ? Is such-and-such-a-thing too expensive this week? Do they still stock this brand? Why on earth didn’t I order that last time?”

The questions kept coming, but I had no answers.

I hate making grocery lists.

However, I knew that was the least of my problems. How to get what I needed (or wanted) was even more dubious. Either I had to journey Outside to begin my hopeless search (I didn’t have a map) or convince someone else to find a way – and even then it wasn’t certain whether I would get exactly what I asked for.

Not to mention the fact that I have no money.

Wincing, I picked myself up from the hard floor and moved to the kitchen window. I must have spent hours in the pantry, for Outside was all dark and empty. No star or nearby House-light could be seen.

I turned back. It was then that I realised the light in the pantry had stopped working.

I groaned.

Great! At least I know one thing I can definitely put on the list: light bulbs! Oh, and bread.

But how to get them? How to pay for them?

“Maybe if I make a good enough list He will go Outside and get what I want – I mean, need. I shouldn’t say ‘want’; that sounds so selfish, especially since I know I can never repay Him.”

Then I remembered my family and friends. Away in their own separate Houses, they probably needed help, too. Maybe the fact I remembered them would make Him more willing to go Outside.

So, I grabbed a pen and notepad from the table and retreated to the only light in the kitchen to begin writing.

Bread, oil, fruit, meat, etc. – I just wrote down every single important item I could think of, even though I had no idea if I or my friends and family needed all of them. How could I without enough light?

There! I was finished. I tore the sheet of paper off the notepad and stood there admiring the list.

But then, it suddenly dawned on me that if we had truly run out of all those things, there was no way we could survive for long.

I gasped as another thought came to me. “What if He thinks I’m asking for too much? But what can I cross out?”

I felt His presence in the room.

Confused and distressed, I blurted out, “What do You expect me to do? I don’t know what I need! And it’s obvious I don’t know how on earth to ask You properly, even if I did. But I know I can’t get it myself. So, how am I supposed to make this, this grocery list?” My head drooped down until my forehead rested upon the notepad in my hands.

“Yes, it is true you cannot get what you need by yourself. I am your Provider, your Light. There is nothing in the Outside World for you. Don’t you remember where your daily bread comes from?” He paused for a moment before saying, “Will you give Me your list?”

“It’s not good enough,” I replied without looking up, holding it even tighter. “It needs to be fixed.”

“You need to let it go.”

Reluctantly, I placed the sheet of paper in His outstretched hand, still not daring to lift my head. What would He think when He read my stupid list?

What seemed like minutes passed without a word being spoken. I couldn’t bear the silence anymore, so I finally cast a quick look at Him.

He was still there, but my list was nowhere to be seen. Suddenly, I understood: He already knew what it contained, even while the words were still in my mind.

“You do not have to figure out what you need on your own. You do not have to make lists. Pray with the help of My Spirit, make your requests known to Me, and I will answer you according to My will.”

“I understand that now, Lord… and I’m sorry.”

I tried to give Him the notepad and pen, but He did not take them.

“I forgive you. Now, keep those and write down what I have told you so that you remember.”

Inspired by John 14 and personal experience.

5 thoughts on “Grocery Lists

  1. beautiful written about a very humbling part of life indeed. I have decided this 2019, to not chase down the provision from our Heavenly Father, but rather position myself by faith and obedience, to receive His provision.

    Adele xx

    Liked by 1 person

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