No desire to pray or read myself into a peaceful state; just skimming through programs on the television with the clicker. "Fifty-seven channels and nothin' on."
I had camped out longer than usual on one particular channel, for no particular reason when another, smaller insomniac crawled into my lap in the recliner.
Ninja Turtle footy-pajamas. Yawning big, rubbing eyes, piling up without a greeting or even acknowledgement of my presence.
Four years old, two in the morning, checking out the tube with Dad and seeing his very first Rodeo. Bull-riding as a matter of fact.
Silent. Watching. In the dock, on the bull, hand under the strap. A nod of the cowboy's head and the gate opens: Pandemonium.
Bucking, twisting, snorting. Clowns askew. Crowd cheering. Cowboy flying.
Jonathan, watching, taking it all in. Then he declares into the quiet with all seriousness (brow furrowed), "If I was ridin' a cow and he did me like THAT . . . I would just get me a horse!"
I guess I've never heard anything funnier at two a.m.! I started to explain, but instead I just laughed and laughed -- to his consternation.
I'm sure one of the MANY reasons our Heavenly Father loves us so is because WE make HIM laugh. And cry. We misjudge His tumult in our lives as we often wish and pray for a calmer ride.
But God embraces us warmly and says, "It's supposed to be like that . . . it's a bull ride, you see. It's not a mistake. It's not out of control."
There is purpose, and it's not as frivolous as a rodeo trophy or purse. It's called "bearing your cross."
The Father says, "Hang on. Ride. Persevere. Overcome. It's MY show. I MADE the bull. I made the stall. I PUT you on the beast. I opened the gate. RIDE!
Bear your cross.
Grow in grace. Learn the lesson. Win the prize. Make the devil mad. Believe. Hope.
"Deep calls to deep at the noise of YOUR waterspouts, God! All of YOUR waves and YOUR billows have gone over me." Psalm 42:7
"Why have you allowed yourself to be cast down (thrown off?), Oh, my soul? And why are you so upset? YOU . . . . (me) HOPE in God --- I'm going to praise Him YET!" Psalm 42:11
Get me a horse? Yep, I'd like one, Pardner. But no . . . . . open the gate.