Summer Bugs

Snow sparkled in the driveway when I wrote my first blog entry, and as I sit to write this third entry (clearly long overdue) I’m counting the fifth day in a row of our air conditioning running—a rare and monumental event in this thrifty, Dutch household.  It is summer.  Summer: the season for which I was made!  It all delights me—the heat waves, the sweat, the feel of hot, wet pavement as I dangle my toes in our pool, Coppertone on baby arms, sun hats, popsicles, painted toes, camping in a tent with two little ones and waking up (far too early) to hear them giggling at each other.  Summer.  This summer, however, I have found something which does not delight me; a group that gives me goosebumps and the heebie jeebies, as my mom would say.  Bugs!  Now, understand, I am not the girl who has her husband kill every spider and swat every fly (though, since he’s much taller than me, I argue he has an advantage and often hand our swatter to him).  I was the little girl who followed my mother as she gardened and collected worms for pets and netted grasshoppers in the fields behind our home.  It’s a particular kind of bug that has captured my attention: large, giant, monstrous wasps. I can hear their buzzing halfway across the backyard and am convinced they’re as big as my four-year old’s thumb (do remember, though, I’m a creative writer)—I can almost see their stingers gleaming.  We’re working on ridding our yard of these heebie jeebie-creators, but for now, when I hear one buzzing nearby, I don’t let it out of my sight.

So, this morning, as I sat on the loveseat nearby a window for my Bible study, I noticed one of these gigantic wasps repeatedly flying into the window’s glass.  I watched as it tried five or six times to fly through the glass, and then finally it gave up and flew away.  It is quiet in our house when I do my Bible study (I get up earlier than my girls), so I have time to be ponderous.  I have time to think about the Word I’m reading and to think about how I might be like that silly wasp.  See, he kept trying to get through the glass because he thought there was something better on the other side (or maybe it was a bet he took from a friend).  I’m sure the glass was frustrating as over and over it kept him from his goal.   Since I sat on the other side of the glass, I knew there was nothing better for that wasp (aside from a quick trip to bug-heaven by way of our bug-zapping swatter).  With my time to ponder, I saw that I can so often be like that wasp–flinging myself at something I’m so sure is good or at least better then here.  But, my gracious God, puts that triple-pane glass in front of me—glass of plans changing, people letting me down, or puzzle pieces simply not falling together as they “should.”   Like the wasp, I get frustrated thinking if I could just get through, if God would just open the window for me…

The window didn’t just keep the wasp out of a place that would have meant sure and quick death, but it also redirected him.  I watched him (I told you, I don’t let them out of my sight when they’re nearby) quickly move on to the neighbor’s flower garden bursting with petunias.  Those windows God won’t open, they’re because He knows at some point, I’ll get frustrated enough with throwing my head against the glass to look around.  I’m sure others have written and spoken about this concept in a variety of ways using many analogies, maybe even some similar to mine.  But, this was fresh for me today.  A reminder, again, that the triple-panes I sometimes find in front of me are put there by a God who didn’t spare His own son for me.  They were placed there by a God who refuses to give me what I think is good, rather than that which He knows is excellent.