I loved to hear the stories my father, Harold, told me. Life on the Otaki farm when he was a small child was full of fun and action.
His Dad’s father had immigrated from Shetland in 1865 but his Mum’s family had come from England over 20 years before that. There was an old family photo album; ladies in big wide dresses and men with thick bushy beards.
Harold laughed at the photos. What would it be like to have a beard like that?
He didn’t want to wait until he was grown up to find out. He wanted one right now.
First finding some sticky gum, he searched the fence line of the paddocks for horse hair until he had enough. After smearing the gum on his chin he attached the hair.
To his delight it worked.
He ran into the house, bursting through the kitchen door. “Look, Mum!” he shouted.
His Mum turned, and an expression of horror came over her face.
“Harold what have you done?” she cried. “I’ve been searching everywhere for you. We have to go out now. The horse is harnessed and waiting!”
She had to scrub at his face with abrasive sand soap to remove all the gum and horsehair, leaving Harold’s face feeling raw.
Sometimes we can get into a sticky situation and get hurt. Or we can want to be involved in something before God knows we are ready. But his help is just a prayer away.
In Jeremiah 29:11-12 it says: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me and I will listen to you.” (NIV)
God’s timing is always right. There are good reasons why God didn’t design little boys to grow beards. He is an amazing creator.
We can trust his wisdom and judgement in everything.