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Some of my stories are published in:
A Cup of Comfort Devotional for Mothers and Daughters (Adams Media, 2009)
Chicken Soup: What I Learned from the Dog (2009)
Love is a Flame (Bethany House, 2010)
Extraordinary answers to Prayer (Guideposts, 2010)
Love is a Verb (Bethany House, 2011)
Big Dreams from Small Spaces (Group Publishing, 2012)

Thursday, June 20, 2013

I Want Cherries!

On my last evening in San Diego, we went to Anthony's. It's a nice fish restaurant right on the wharf, sandwiched between tour ships and museums.
My almost four-year-old granddaughter, Kaya, especially enjoyed the little bowl of cherries that the waiter brought to help keep her from squirming as we adults finished our meals.
Actually, the cherries were supposed to be for everyone, but Kaya didn't know that.

 I savored the last spoon-fulls of chocolate mousse, and Wayne and Kiri shared a lemon cake that was supposed to have a bit of rum in the batter. I couldn't taste any rum in it at all, but Kiri insisted she could.
The waiter brought the check and while Wayne pulled out his charge card, we ladies took the two girls out to the front of the restaurant.
All of a sudden, Kaya began to wail, "My cherries, my cherries! I left my cherries in the restaurant."
By this time it was simply too late to go back to reclaim her remaining two cherries. We tried to explain to Kaya that after you leave the restaurant, the workers come to your table and quickly remove all the dishes and food that we left.

But Kaya wouldn't be reasoned with. She kept wailing about her cherries.
By this time, Wayne rejoined us and we walked along the sidewalk enjoying the sights and listening to the waves lap against the ships lining the wharf.
And still, Kaya kept up her lament. She sobbed, "I want my cherries," sniff, sniff, "I want my cherries."

Wayne and Kiri and I all tried to distract Kaya by pointing out interesting sights and by talking about plans for going to Disney Land.
I don't know what Kaya will grow up to be. But I do know that whatever it is, it will be the kind of job that requires intense focus and persistence.

My granddaughter kept up her plea for cherries all the way home, up the stairs, into the house, and even while being tucked into bed. "I want cherries."
What should have been a pleasant drive home became an exasperating half hour of listening to a alternately whining, then sobbing preschooler.

After the kids had been put to bed, we older folk chuckled about Kaya's persistence.
My granddaughter's intense pleas for "cherries!" reminded me of Jesus's parable of the unrighteous judge and the widow who kept coming to him for justice. (Luke 18:2-5)

Because the widow refused to give up and kept crying out to the judge, she eventually wore him down and he gave her what she sought.

Kaya didn't get her cherries, but she had the right idea about not giving up.
She's figured out what a lot of us grown ups haven't learned: don't give up.
If you want something enough, keep asking for it, or working for it, or pursuing it, and most of the time you'll get it eventually.
It may not be today, or tomorrow.
Eventually you'll get your "cherries."

But first ask yourself, "Is this "cherry" that I want a good thing?
If you're not sure, go to the Lord:
  • Ask the Lord to help you discern if the thing you are focused on getting or achieving is pleasing to Him. (Sometimes, the "cherries" you desire are not what is best for you.
  • Study the Bible so you know God's mind and heart.
  • Commit your life to pleasing God. Submit to His answer even if the answer is 'no.'
  • Pray every day and often..not just for what you want, but for God's blessings on others.

"In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared about men. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, 'Grant me justice against my adversary.'

For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, 'Even though I don't fear God or care about men, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won't eventually wear me out with her coming!'" (Luke 18: 2-5 NIV Bible)


  1. Great analogy, Dena. God wants to give us good things, and only He knows what those good things are. This has been a hard lesson for me to learn, but I do think I'm getting it. A little. Thanks for posting this. Very timely for me.

  2. Nancy, I think your move to Oregon will be a "cherry!"

  3. Hi Dena -

    So many times I've wanted something and didn't get it. Looking back, I see that what God eventually gave me was so much better.

    Susan :)

  4. So true, Susan! The Lord always knows best.