Devotional time with Papa can be very interesting. Ever since I read The Shack I have shaken my Gandalf's image of God and allowed Papa to be truly funny, cheeky and instructive in playful ways, to make the bible come alive for me.
But there I was, all serious, reading Luke 6:38, "Give, and it shall be given to you, they shall give into your lap..."
So in a classic childhood avalanche of questions, I asked, "Give what, Papa?" And what "it" shall I get? And who is "they?" Is it OK for someone to put something in my lap?
That's when he retold a childhood favorite story of Jack and the Beanstalk—the poor little boy with a sick mom who sold his mother's only cow for a few magic beans.
"But Papa!" I protested. "Isn't it wrong to think of magic?"
Papa smiled. "Everything is spiritual, my dear. Everything is spiritual."
He continued with the story. "First of all, No one ever talks about the man who gave Jack the beans. Do you ever wonder who he was and where he came from?"
"Papa! was that you?" Papa chuckled with a twinkle in his eye.
"Little Jack gave all that he had left of value in this world hoping for a miracle. His bold act of faith incurred his mother's wrath and she threw away Jack's magic beans. But little did she know that those beans would lead Jack into the realm of the supernatural to access a supernatural wealth. His beans grew a stalk so tall that it reached into the heavens. That's where he met with two things. A Giant and A Goose that laid golden eggs. Jack grabbed the goose and slayed the giant and he and his mother were never poor again."
"My child, there are several lessons here for you.
1. When you are at your very last, always look for me, the man with the magic beans. I am they—the one who supplies seed for the sower (2 Corinthians 9:10).
2. Don't be afraid to trade in your last for the ridiculous. An act of faith might incur the wrath or ridicule of those around you but it will get you into the supernatural realm.
3. Don't let the Giant distract you from getting the Goose.There will always be a Giant of the Problem right alongside your Goose of Provision.
4. Faith is the way to your provision and a weapon for the problem. The same faith that got you to the Goose is the same faith that gets rid of the Giant.
5. Papa will never be far away from you.