Medicine for My Daughter

by Andrew Forrest

My little daughter recently had a sinus infection that caused one of her eyes to swell shut. (This happened over Christmas. Of course it did.) The doctor prescribed medicinal eye drops, which we were to apply to her little eyes several times a day. I don’t know if it’s easier to rope a calf than to apply eye drops to a squirmy toddler, but I’m certain it’s more pleasant for both cowboy and calf. After dropping the clear little drops in her hair and her ears and her mouth and her nose, we decided on a different tack: bribery. “If you let me put the eyedrops in your eyes, we’ll give you some ‘choca”’. (“Choca” being her word for chocolate.) It worked. A drop was equal to a chocolate chip, and soon several times a day we were being asked for “I-jops” and “chocas”, and dispensing a fair quantity of both.

And then her prescription ran its course, the infection went away, and we no longer needed the bribe. However, like many a corrupt Third World bureaucrat, my daughter had become hooked on the hush money, and would silently sidle up to me several times a day, climb into my lap, stick her face in mine, cock her head like a crow, and earnestly ask, “I-jops? Chocas?”

Weak father though I am, I am not about to give her medicine she doesn’t need, and so I’ve been politely turning down her requests. If it were good for her, I’d refill the prescription, but it isn’t and I haven’t.

But you know what? I love it that she asks, and I hope she never stops asking me for things.

Jesus says that if human fathers like me delight in giving to our children, how much more will the one he calls our “Father in heaven” delight in giving to his children.

So, when he says in today’s Gospel reading, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you”, I wonder: maybe he really means it.

What do you need to ask for today?

Today’s Scripture

Matthew 7:7-12


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2 comments

An White January 18, 2019 - 8:00 am

Hi Andrew!
Thank you so much for all your hard work — you do incredible work! I grew up Roman Catholic and as a young adult, began to feel that all the rote prayer and rituals were not touching my heart and helping me know God. Years have gone by and I have finally started to begin my spiritual journey to find God in earnest. And I am absolutely sure I would not know how to even begin without your guidance and the beautiful community that is Munger Place.

My very first exposure to Munger wasn’t even at church. I had volunteered at Habitat for Humanity for the first time a couple years ago, simply because I had always wanted to. And it happened to coincide with a day that a group of Mungarians were also there on that project. I thought to myself, “If I believed in God, I would wonder if this was a sign.”

Half a year later, I began searching for a church that might help me find God. We visited several different churches of all different styles and denominations, but nothing felt right. But then we visited Munger for the first time and you greeted the congregation with, “No matter what your day has been like or your week has been like, no matter what you look like, whether you believe what we believe or even if you vehemently disagree, in the name of Jesus Christ, you are welcome here in this church today.” And I thought to myself, “That’s how Jesus would’ve spoken to the crowds.”

We should’ve followed along with you last year in reading the entire Bible, but no excuses. I didn’t. This year, though, the idea of reading just the Gospels somehow felt right. As a child, I was very familiar with the Old Testament stories from my illustrated Bible my mother gave me. But the New Testament can be oh, so cryptic and mysterious. Having your blog entries to read along with the daily Gospel readings is unquestionably helpful for me. To ponder further on what it means and how it should be applied to my daily life.

All that is to say, thank you for all that you do. Thank you for this blog.

P.S. Having grown up in the Catholic church, the idea of a married minister/preacher/pastor was such a foreign concept to me. But reading your blog entry here makes me think that your experiences and perspective as a father are surely helping me to know and understand our Father just a little more.

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lewis mcknighg January 18, 2019 - 9:17 am

Andrew I had the same experience but with finger nails and jelly beans. My 2 year old daughter never want to get her finger nails cut and now she want to get them cut everday. Your story made me laugh and be thankful for my family.

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