GOD’S COMMANDS SHOW US WHAT HE LIKES, WHAT HE DOESN’T LIKE, WHAT HE THINKS IS GOOD, AND WHAT HE THINKS IS BAD.
Bible Reading of the Day: Read Psalm 119:65-68.
Verse of the Day: “You are good and do only good; teach me your principles” (Psalm 119:68).
Lee stood at the ice-cream counter with his dad and Pastor Martin. His dad and the pastor were good friends, and Lee liked it when they invited him to do things with them.
“What flavor ice cream would you like, Lee?” the pastor asked. “It’s my treat.”
Pastor Martin and Dad argued in a friendly way for a few moments, but Pastor won the argument and repeated his question to Lee.
“Chocolate, please,” he said, smiling in anticipation.
A few moments later they each had an ice-cream cone. They walked outside, crossed the street, and sat on a bench in the small park across the street from the ice-cream parlor.
After a few moments of conversation between him and Dad, Pastor Martin turned to Lee. “You know, Lee,” he said, “I think I can guess your favorite ice-cream flavor.” Lee smiled and raised his shirt sleeve to wipe the chocolate from around his mouth. “It’s chocolate, isn’t it?” Pastor Martin said.
Lee nodded. “You knew because I’m eating chocolate ice cream now,” he said matter-of-factly.
Pastor Martin nodded. “That’s part of it, yes,” he admitted. “But I’ve noticed something every time I’ve seen you order ice cream. You always order chocolate! Did you know that’s the same way I can tell what God likes?”
Lee’s forehead wrinkled, and he flashed a puzzled look at the pastor. “You know what flavor God likes?”
Pastor and Dad laughed together. “No,” Pastor said. “But I can tell the things he does like by paying attention to the ‘orders’ he gives.”
Lee said nothing, but his expression revealed that he didn’t understand what the pastor meant.
“When you order chocolate ice cream,” Pastor said, “it shows me that you like chocolate ice cream. Well, when God tells his people to love each other …”
“It shows that he likes love!” Lee said, finishing the pastor’s sentence.
“That’s right!” Pastor answered. “And when God tells us to forgive each other…”
“It shows that God likes forgiveness!”
“Exactly. Now do you see what I mean?”
Lee nodded. He licked his cone. “I think God likes chocolate ice cream too,” he said.
Pastor Martin laughed. “He probably does, Lee. He probably does.”
TO DISCUSS: What’s your favorite flavor of ice cream? Can you figure out other things God likes (in addition to love and forgiveness) by remembering the commands he has given?
TO PRAY: “Almighty God, as we learn more about you, we learn more of your likes and dislikes. Thank you for these private glimpses of you.”