This morning I took a trip to Waffle Land. This is what happens and where you find yourself when your kids’ imaginations run wild at the breakfast table. Perhaps you have been to Waffle Land, but this was my first trip there. I was unfamiliar with the surroundings and the inhabitants, or, as my daughter informed me, the lack of inhabitants – specifically, one particular inhabitant. You see, Waffle Land is in need of a MR. Butterworth. Presently, Mrs. Butterworth resides there in a Log Cabin – all alone. She longs to fill the Log Cabin with little Butterworths, but alas, there is no Mr. Butterworth! As delicious and wonderful as it may appear, Waffle Land is strange and…incomplete.
Perhaps stranger even than Waffle Land is how this idea of a strange land coincided with something I had read a few hours before this little trip. “How shall we sing the LORD’S song in a strange land?” (Psalm 137:4) Is there any congruity between singing the LORD’S song in a strange land and visiting Waffle Land? I think so.
Waffle Land, because it was spoken into being by my children, became part of my real world, a world with imaginative children, waffles, dishes, laundry, cacti, coffee, friends, neighbors, God. This is my world, but it is not everone’s world. Author Eugene Peterson, in his book Tell It Slant, asks, “How do we talk about God as we are rubbing shoulders on a daily basis with men and women who practice a way of life that takes for granted a quite different set of ways and means for becoming whole, complete, our true selves, than we do?” (page 145) In my own words: how do I live out my faith in this real world in such a real way that those around me, who may think they’re looking for Mr. Butterworth, come to see that perhaps they’re really looking for Christ? And how do I do this so it sounds like singing, not fingernails on a chalkboard?
While singing my song in this strange land, I must remember that whatever part God has given me, it is ultimately His plan that counts. And His plan includes adoption. “How blessed is God! And what a blessing he is! He’s the Father of our Master, Jesus Christ, and takes us to the high places of blessing in him. Long before he laid down earth’s foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love, to be made whole and holy by his love. Long, long ago he decided to adopt us into his family through Jesus Christ. (What pleasure he took in planning this!) He wanted us to enter into the celebration of his lavish gift-giving by the hand of his beloved Son.” (Ephesians 1:3-6, The Message)
Perhaps Mrs. Butterworth will eventually consider adoption, too.