Monday, May 22, 2017

I Can Only Imagine

One of the things I didn't anticipate about motherhood is the kids' constant planning of birthday parties.

We have literally hosted one legit birthday party, ever; and yet our lives seem to be a constant verbal stream of "this will be my birthday theme" and "this will be my birthday cake flavor/decoration" and "this is who I want to invite to my birthday party."

Interestingly, their ideas for birthday party themes and decorations only extend as far as their experience of the same. When Lili turned three, I went all out and did the Pinterest coated-in-sprinkles cake, and it blew her mind. She talked about it all year and wanted the same cake for her fourth birthday, along with the same Dollar Store butterfly decorations. She literally could not imagine anything better.

As my kids were rehashing the highlights of a recent birthday cake that we made for a friend - it had Haribo gummy frogs on top of it, and now they want frogs on their birthday cakes - it struck me that our imaginations really are quite limited when it comes to "as good as it gets." As CS Lewis famously said, "It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”

Then there's this promise straight from Scripture: 
“What no eye has seen, nor ear heard,
nor the heart of man imagined,
what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Cor 2:9)

And this:
"Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen." (Ephesians 3:20-21).

It's hard to imagine, but faith assures us that this is true.

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