Last year this time we had the whole family flown down to our dearest Emirate. Our tiny abode was flooded with parents (both his and mine), siblings, nephews, nieces…everybody under the sun (read:tree)
The whole of December was packed with Christmas dinners, visits to family near and dear and couple of parks and malls. One such day in December, the family and I went shopping to Dragon Mart (Dubai). For those who are not from U.A.E, Dragon Mart is the largest trading hub for Chinese products here. You have over a thousand outlets offering an incredible variety of products like home essentials, furnishings, office equipment, furniture, electronics, fashion, you name it. ( I promise, this is not a sponsored post! )
So now you know why we love splurging on those amazing deals, especially my family from Qatar.
As always, the self-nominated babysitter in me was on duty, so that the parents and grandparents could shop in peace. Now Dragon Mart is ginormous in length and size, so you’ll need ample amount of time, energy and refreshments to keep you going unless you’re a regular shopper there. Somewhere in the middle of our expedition from store to store, the kids started to get restless and hungry especially the youngest- Jonathan.
Being the aunt who loves to pamper kids and make sure they over-indulge in all things forbidden by their parents, I decided to ask a defenceless question to Jonathan (leader of the tribe) on what he would like to eat. The tiny person he is, dragged me to the nearest Kiosk filled with chips, chocolates, sundaes and all kinds of candy. I gulped down hard seeing how excited Jonathan stood in front of his nirvana.
So I asked, “Ummm …Jonu .. what exactly would you like to have from here?”.
I saw his eyes rapidly scan the LED board though I wonder if he could read that fast. He was using the pictures to give him a clue. Balancing on his toes he continued ‘reading’. After he had enough of that, he started to slowly skip around, along the length of the Kiosk. He then quickly halted to a stop with an animated expression to add emphasis to his sudden standstill and grab my attention as well. He began to trudge loudly walking closer to the Kiosk, signalling with his eyes have spotted something, smudged his face against the window display and managed to squeeze in a grin.
Seeing him try so hard to keep up the animation, I asked, “Sohar chips?” He nodded excitedly and pointed at a large packet. I towered over him and picked it up. Soon after he caught hold of it, his hand reached out to grab something else.
“You want Pringles as well?” I asked
“Yeah, but this is a small tin,” He said, apprehensively.
I looked around for a bigger one, asked the nonchalant saleswoman as well but it looked like they were out of them. I saw the 6-yr old trying to make a hard decision on which one to choose.
He shelved the Sohar chips and with a slight disappointment but unsatisfied look that this small tin will not suffice, he decided to stick with his love for Pringles.
“Are you sure you don’t want the BIG packet of Sohar chips?” I asked, trying to emphasis on the size of it.
Jonathan moved his head side to side and claimed he liked pringles better.
“Alright then, pringles it is”
After I paid for it, he ran back to his brother and cousins and began showing off what his aunt got for him. I saw him open the lid, to share the tin but also keeping a close eye on how many each of them took. He knew it would finish soon. To add to his feeling of insufficiency, I asked him to share it with his grandparents as well. Hesitantly but surely, Jonathan obeyed just that.
I smiled to myself and walked into one of the stores, hoping to do some personal shopping, while the grandparents decided to take a break and look after the kids.
A little later I heard Jonathan scream my name. Surprised and to know why I turned around and saw him grinning with a larger tin of Pringles in his hand.
“Where did you get this from?” I asked, confused.
“My father got it for me,” He said, his face shining with pride.
“You were only able to get a small one. See what he got me.” He exclaimed, running around. (DISCLAIMER: His parents reading this, those were his exact words).
I don’t think I’ll be able to forget the joy I saw on his face over what his father got him.
It was more of what his father was ABLE to give him.
ABLE TO GIVE!
In our rat race on this earth, do we often forget what Our Father is able to give us?
Do we often go searching for things that we think is what we deserve? Do we believe that this is all we deserve or it is all we can afford?
Why do we limit God so often?
Why do we forget that God who gave His most priced possession His Son to suffer mercilessly and die for our sins, would not give us what we need? Why should God hold back if He has already given us His best?
He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?- Romans 8:32
But let me make this clear: God is not a magician because there is a purpose behind everything that He does and provides. Also, God is not a vending machine, just there to simply answer and obey our demands.
Our God is a gracious and kind God who loves His children more than life and wants only to bless them.
Today whatever and how many ever be your unanswered prayers, trust that God will answer in His time and only God can give a complete and satisfying answer- which according to Jonathan- maybe a large tin of Pringles to splurge on.
This Christmas season remember that God sent His Son Jesus to finally eliminate the gap between Him and Us. To have a fulfilling relationship of love, peace and joy with Him. He provided the one and only perfect gift that could save us- Jesus Christ. Nothing else can satisfy us like He does.