Wish Lists

Wednesday, October 26. 13:27. My room.

(This is a true story of real, actual events)

My little sister Ruthie walks into my room and presents me with piece of paper. “Christmas List 2011” is scrawled on the top in smudged pencil, along with some drawings and her name.

“This is the list of what I want for Christmas this year,” she tells me. She seems quite proud of this fact.

“Didn’t you give me one of these the other day?”

She shrugs. “This is my fourth one. This is what I want now, not what I wanted back when I gave you the last one.”

This, of course, makes no sense whatsoever to me. It’s Wednesday. She gave me her previous list on Monday. But, you know, whatever. I’m too nice to point this out anyway.

I tell her to read me the list out loud, since her handwriting is a bit indiscernible.

Ruthie clears her throat and begins. “Number one: A DS.”

I interrupt: “Wait a second. You aren’t allowed to have a  Nintendo DS.” She says she knows. I ask then why did she write it? She says she’s still hoping she’s going to get one anyway. There is a pause, and then she continues to read.

“Number two: An eighty dollar doll house.” She ignores my snort. “Number three: Barbie clothes. Number four: Barbie movie called Princess Charm School. Number five: A DS. Number six…”

“Wait a second,” I say again, sitting up a little this time. “You aren’t allowed to have a DS.” She says she knows. “Then why do you ask for one?” She says she’s still hoping she’s going to get it. Now I’m getting frustrated from getting the same answers. “Ruthie, you know you can’t have a DS, but you put on on your Christmas list twice? What do you think–that Mom and Dad are going to change their minds?”

Ruthie pauses a few seconds before answering. “I don’t know. I just really want one.”

It’s on the tip of my tongue to argue some sense into the foolish child, when a thought occurs to me: I am the same way. I’m constantly asking God for things that He’s made clear He doesn’t want me to have. How many times have I begged Him for selfish things, even when I know that it’s not in His will to give those things to me? He’s told me time and time again that He will provide for my needs, and that I don’t need to beg and whine for anything He hasn’t supplied for me. And yet I keep making wish lists. And I keep feeling disappointed when I don’t get what I wanted in the end.

I definitely never intend to be demanding, or selfish. I just keep thinking in my head, “Maybe I’m still going to get it. Maybe He’s changed His mind.” But you know what? If God ever “changes His mind”, it’s not going to be a wish list that does it. It’s going to be because it was His plan all along. I don’t need to bring a wish list to Him. If I trust that He will supply my needs, then He will never leave me feeling jipped or disappointed.

This is a thought that encourages me. It gives me hope. God doesn’t need my suggestions to determine what’s best for my life. He already knows, and anything He gives me is going to be a whole lot better than anything I could have asked for myself.

In the end, I let Ruthie give me a copy her wish list and I tell her I’ll do my best to get something on it. Although I’m definitely leaning more toward the Barbie clothes than the eighty dollar doll house. She’s happy that I let her read it, and she dances out of my room in her bubbly, nine-year-old way. She probably doesn’t know the lesson she’s taught me.


(Random photo of Ruthie for you, Ya-Ya <3)


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  1. * Samantha says:

    so powerful. I never thought about that before. I love the way God can speak to us through the simplest things and even through our siblings. I remember one time when God taught m about how much He loved me when I was reading a children book to my siblings…I still adore that book (Just The Way You Are ~Max Lucado).

    | Reply Posted 6 years, 4 months ago
    • * RachelC says:

      Children’s books have affected me in so many ways… I think that sometimes it takes looking at something special through the perspective of a child to realize how much we “grownups” complicate it. 🙂

      | Reply Posted 6 years, 4 months ago
  2. * YaYa Tomczak says:

    That was the perfect picture of Ruth to include. Thank you. I’m glad she has hope, too. Sometimes wishes, and dreams, do come true. Maybe not this time, but… It doesn’t hurt to wish big! Especially when you are nine.

    | Reply Posted 6 years, 4 months ago

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