catapult magazine

catapult magazine

Vol 5, Num 6 :: 2006.03.24 — 2006.04.07


Donut theology

We have a Saturday morning routine in my house. My wife sleeps in while I take the boys go to a local donut shop for breakfast. Upon arriving, Luke and Isaac (my oldest two sons) walk up to the counter and begin to gaze at the variety of potential selections. It is merely part of a routine. They want things to be the same each week. If I forget to get them apple juice with their donuts, their entire Saturday ritual has been destroyed and I will not be able to recover harmony. While they gaze at the donuts, I play along, acting as if I don?t know which donuts they will choose. They both like plain glazed donuts, or as they describe them, ?the ones with holes.? After discussing the selections, they usually choose the glazed donuts. We proceed to a table, sit together, drink apple juice and eat donuts with holes in them.

About once a month, Luke looks for something different. The donuts with frosting and sprinkles look very good to him. The colors dazzle, and I can see the desire for the sprinkles in his eyes. I know what the result will be. If he picks the donut with sprinkles, he will sit down, take one or two bites, and decide that he doesn?t like it. He will ask me to buy him a different donut and I will have to explain that he has already chosen his donut. We will not leave the donut shop in a good mood. How do I know this will happen? It has happened before?repeatedly. In fact, I have begun to intervene. When Luke begins to look at the sprinkle-covered donuts, I remind him that he will not like them. He has a short memory and sometimes he doesn?t believe me. He often insists on choosing the sprinkled donut and leaves the donut shop disappointed.

I know my son. In some ways, I know him better than he knows himself. I know what will please him and what will disappoint him. I know that he sometimes gets a wandering eye and is drawn by what looks pretty. I know that the appealing and pretty donut will leave him disappointed. When I intervene, to make a suggestion, it is because I want to help him, even if he looks at my intervention as annoying and intrusive. I want what is best for him and I know what will bring him the greatest joy.

God knows His children. He knows us better than we know ourselves. He knows us better than I know Luke. I am confident that Luke will be disappointed if he gets the donut he wants, and I try to guide him in a different direction. It is done out of love, even if my guidance annoys him. God knows that there are times in our lives when our eyes are drawn to the pretty and dazzling things that will leave us disappointed. We all have ?sprinkled donuts? in our lives, things that we crave, even if they are not good for us. It may be material possessions or a certain kind of reputation. We may want good looks, influential friends, or popularity among our peers. These may be goals that leave us disappointed, even if we achieve them. It is possible that as we pursue these ?sprinkled donuts,? we turn away from God?s instruction. We may not want Him pointing out that such ?donuts? may not satisfy.

God offers His instruction out of love for us. He does not want us to be disappointed. He wants us to experience the joy of His creation. He wants us to experience the joy of knowing Him. He guides in order to protect us from the disappointment that our wandering eyes will bring.

I have learned, from my children, to be aware of the sprinkled donuts in my life. I must confess that despite my efforts, I too often pursue the things that dazzle. Inevitably, those dazzling treats leave me disappointed.

As a parent, I am also learning that God?s guidance is something that is good for me, even if I want to resist His leading. I regularly have to resist what I want because God has clearly revealed a plan that is better. I may not like submitting to God?s plan, but I know that ultimately, it will be a better plan. My plans will leave me disappointed, but His loving guidance will ultimately lead me to greater joy.

your comments

comments powered by Disqus