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lightbulbs and overflowing cups

May 22, 2011

Have you ever had one of those lightbulb moments when you realize, “Ohhhh…so that’s what that Scripture means!”  I’m not talking about using your Bible dictionary to figure out the definition of “Ebenezer,” but that moment when a verse you’ve read a thousand times suddenly becomes directly applicable to your life and carries a hundred times more meaning than it did before.  I had one of those moments the other day.

I wish I could go into the details, but this lightbulb moment involves some aspects of my job that, for the moment, should remain confidential.  What I can tell you is that I had a conversation with another teacher on Wednesday in which I had to ask her for a HUGE favor.  I went into the conversation prepared to do a great deal of convincing, pleading, and perhaps a bit of groveling for her to even consider helping me.

You can imagine my surprise when she more or less opened the conversation not with “convince me that this is a good idea,” but “how do we begin?”  There was no issue of convincing with her.  I even asked her if she needed time to decide.  Nope, she said.  Let’s start planning.

And if that weren’t enough, she began to defer a number of decisions to me in order to honor my preferences.  She had every right to respond, “I’ll agree to this, but only if you do a favor for me, like taking on the stuff I dislike doing.”  I would have jumped at that offer.  Instead, I found myself stumbling over my words as I tried to articulate my choices.

Wednesday evening, I finally realized that what my coworker had done for me–or, if you like, what God had done through her–was a real-life example of Psalm 23:5:  “My cup overflows.”  I had been praying that God would make a way for me, but I was expecting it to come by the skin of my teeth.  Instead, I found myself across a desk from a coworker who was offering what I needed, and then some.

It’s humbling and thrilling to have an overflowing cup.

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