Monday, November 9, 2009

A bowl of God's Will (by Billy Coffey)

"I would really like some ice cream."

My son. Though five, he has already perfected those puppy-dog eyes that he thinks will get him most anything he wants. And it does, mostly. I steal a peek at the peas on his plate. In order to get dessert, the peas must be gone.

"I ate a lot of them," he says.

"Okay," I say. (I can't say anything. I still have peas on my plate, too.)

I grab a bowl from the cupboard, his favorite ice cream from the freezer, measure out a scoop and a half, and place it in front of him.

He eyes it suspiciously.

"I don't want this," he says.

"I thought you wanted ice cream."

"I do."

"It's your favorite," I say.

"I know."

"So what's your problem?"

"You gave me the wrong bowl."

Ah. Huh?

"But it doesn't matter what bowl it's in," I answer, "It's still ice cream."

"But I want the blue bowl. This one's white. I really don't like the white one, Daddy."

"Are you going to eat the bowl?" I ask.


"Then I don't see a problem."

"I do. I have the white bowl."

"Well," I answer, "you either eat it out of the white bowl, or you skip your dessert."

I have him. No way will he pass up a bowl of ice cream. Not even if it's in the wrong bowl.

"I'll skip it then," he says. He gets up to play, leaving me alone with my thoughts.

How many times have I asked God for something and then questioned Him when it was given in the wrong package? I've asked Him for love, and it came in a broken heart. I've asked him for happiness, and it came in want. I've asked Him for peace, and it came in hardship.

I got what I asked God to give me. It just came in the wrong bowl.

What about you? What's your bowl?


To read more from Billy Coffey, visit him at at his new website and follow him on the twitter at @billycoffey.


Denise said...

Another awesome post Billy.

Elaina M. Avalos said...


Katie Ganshert said...

So true. Do I still eat what God gives me? I'm pondering over that one this morning.

Heather of the EO said...

I've walked away from my ice cream far too many times in my life. I'm slowly learning to gobble up what's given to me, whatever bowl it comes in even if I just don't understand why I should have to have the white bowl.

~*Michelle*~ said...

OUCH! Totally guilty of turning my nose up to the white bowl lately.

Heather Sunseri said...

Hmmm. Wow, you're not playing fair today. I'm definitely guilty.

Andrea said...

Once again, you have reminded me of a great lesson. Do not complain! GOD knows what is best for me...what size and color!
Blessings, andrea

Maureen said...

Your son was sure of what he wanted and decided to hold out for it. He was willing to accept the consequence: no white bowl, no ice cream he loves. That a child so young can already accept that kind of responsibility attests to the wonderful job you are doing as his father.

I love the multiple lessons in this story.

Loren said...

Once again leave me deep in thought. I am learning that no matter what the package, color or shape that the Lord knows HOW and Why this particular choice is best for me and I need to receive it HIS WAY and not mine.

Thankyou Billy as always I leave pondering these thought long after I leave your post!

Blessings to you and hope you are feeling much better this week

Peter P said...

I like this one, Billy.

I too have the bowl problem. Some stuff just has to go in certain bowls. Same goes for cups.

...and I'm the same with God!

Thanks for pointing it out... I'll have to work on that!

wendy said...

Well, I certainly am glad ---as Billy suggested---came over to see your blog and this post. SO TRUE. Oh, why do I do that so much myself

I plan to be a regular reader of yours if that's ok. I love new blogs, and ones that make me think, make me laugh, make me cry --you get it ----just sharing life with others.
so don't worry, that's not a threat --You won't need a restraining order ---I am safe

Jim H said...

Yep, we've got 1 mismatched spoon that I just love to eat my cereal with - don't know why, but that's just how it is. We studied Psalm 73 yesterday, and it resonates with your post, now I just need to find a way to express it.

Wendy said...

Can I have his ice cream then? I like the white bowl.

jasonS said...

Yep... deal with the same things in my kids. Mom wants to switch the bowl, Dad wants to stand his ground and make a point. I would have done the same thing because it may seem like nothing but it's an important lesson (as you have so ably pointed out)! Thanks Billy...

S. Etole said...

Your writing and your points are always powerful ... the conviction that accompanies them ... hmmm ... necessary but not quite as enjoyable.

Joanne Sher said...

Oh - YES! it's rarely that I get it in the "right" bowl - but I am always, ALWAYS better off spiritually the way it's sent.

Powerful reminder, billy.

Caroline said...

Glad to hear from you Billy. Hope you are feeling much better. Wow, this post seems quite directed to the tests I am going through right now. It is hard to be strong and trust that the package He will present is the best especially when you are in the thick of things. Glad to be reminded He knows what and how to best give us what we need. Thank you.

Kenny said...

I frequently ask for patience. God still hasn't served it in a bowl I like yet and I'm growing impatient!

TUC said...

Trisomy 21. You made me cry.

Helen said...


Janet Oberholtzer said...

Good post ... we don't control everything in our lives, but we do control our choices about whatever comes our way.

Here's another thought - as for the
white or blue bowl ... Is it always God that switches the bowls or is it sometimes satan messing with the good gifts God has for us?