It's spring fever. That is what the name of it is. And when you've got it, you want - oh, you don't quite know what it is you do want, but it just fairly makes your heart ache, you want it so! -Mark Twain

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Frankly Phyllis

Fine Print

I'm not big on "fine print." How about you? As a kid I didn't notice. As a Mom, I thanked my husband for those toys he put together on Christmas Eve with the fine-print directions. About the finest print I read with any pleasure is a piano score by J. S. Bach. All of this works fine for me until I need to know what's in the fine print. Then I pretty much miss the boat. This was the case on a recent three-and-a-half hour layover when I saw an earlier flight departure for my destination posted on the board. My Type-A was delighted with the discovery!

But would they let me board for free or charge for this advantage? The agent very pleasantly pointed out that I had read "Arrivals," not "Departures." She added, "I don't know why they put them right next to each other. They look like the same board and the print is so small. A lot of people get confused." I may start a support group!

The same weekend, another airport, and more fine print. I noticed an online ticket record of an August 8 trip. But I didn't fly on 8.08 this summer. I quietly pleaded my case at the check-in counter. The agent found it online and couldn't understand why either. Until she spotted 8.8.09! Fine print. We both missed it!

As if that weren't enough to make the point in my large-print brain, there's one more miss. Nineteen family members vacationed with us this summer. It was wonderful! Between trips to the zoo, pool, favorite haunts, and meal prep, there were birthdays. The amazing family bakery in town was closed the entire time however. Their son is my godchild, so I pulled rank and texted a request, "Any birthday cakes in the freezer? Call me and I'll meet you up there." No call. In 98 degrees, I baked a cake. Late that night I picked up a text response, in fine print, "Sure, I'm up here, which one do you want?" No ring tone, just the fine print that I missed. I really beat myself up over that one!

God understands people like me. He wants to be sure I get His message, daily, in whatever print it takes! It couldn't be easier. He's somehow preserved 66 books inspired for us, the Holy Bible, through thousands of years and endless attempts to destroy it. In addition to hard copy, at our fingertips there's a myriad of translations online, in both fine and large print! Devotions in print and online abound as well. Talk shows like Woman to Woman explore life from a biblical perspective and assure us we are not in this alone.

Granted, the Bible is full of not only adventure and profound truth to save us from ourselves through faith in Christ, but also plenty of mystery and teaching that can stump us. As someone said, "We know precious little about God. But what little we know is precious!" Have you discovered the strength and peace that passes understanding by spending time with God in His Word? If not, try it for one month, just a few verses a day, and see what a huge difference it makes! Seriously, God proves Himself when you draw close to Him. He buoys up your spirit and gives you clarity as you learn to trust His plan for your life.

I know some of it feels like small print: hard to read and even harder to understand. I think of it like the medicines in my cabinet. I do have to squint to read the fine print, but it's worth it to know whether to take it on an empty stomach or not. I take it for my good health. I read the Bible for my good spiritual health. It's a normal part of each day, like eating a meal. If I skip a meal, I get cranky. If I don't eat at all, I get anorexic and risk death. Likewise, if I skip my daily dose of Bible reading and time with the Lord, I get cranky. If I don't feed on His Word at all, I become spiritually anorexic and risk eternal death.

I hope you'll give it a go, getting into God's print. It's large enough to see Him and yourself in a relationship. First of all, He imPRINTS each one of our hearts with Himself -- with a longing for Him. Some call that a "God-shaped vacuum." Then He surrounds us with His fingerprints on sunsets, flowers, newborn babies, children's giggles, elderly wrinkles, telescopes, microscopes, and taste buds. He imprints within us gifts to use for our good and His glory. His hands literally saved us from our sin. They bear the imprint of the nails that held Him to a cross, which His disciples and others saw here on earth before He ascended into heaven and which we'll see when we get there. Frankly, that's fine print worth the read!

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