Have We Checked the Manual?

by Leigh Ann Thomas @LThomasWrites


There it was again. Every minute or so, the faint sounds echoed throughout the house. What in the world? I checked the fire alarms, then attempted to narrow down the general location of the annoyance. My detective work led me to our refrigerator—delivered just that morning. Sure enough, when I opened its shiny new door, the grating beeps increased in volume.

Being a highly technical person, I began pushing buttons. If it looked remotely like a button, I pressed it. No luck. Beep-beep-beep…

It was time to escalate. I called the fine establishment where Mr. Fridge used to live and asked for help. I used my most calm, professional voice. “Ma’am, please tell me how to stop this infernal noise.”

The answer? (Wait for it…)

“Have you read the manual?”

In the interest of full transparency, I felt a special kinship with the apostle Paul in that moment, because I began having horribly wretched thoughts (see Romans 7:24-25 for further details). Thankfully, I took a deep breath and maintained composure.

“No ma’am. Um, I’ll do that right now.” I skimmed the manual, pressed a few more buttons, and the beeping ceased.

The experience got me to thinking. I’m incredibly thankful that when I approach the Lord in a state of distress, He doesn’t smack my hand and ask if I’ve read the manual. He could, you know. Can you imagine?

What now, child? You’re hurt or confused again? You don’t understand your present situation? Hmm. Have you cracked open that book I gave you? You know, the one with all the answers?

How many times do I have to tell you? My Holy Spirit speaks through prayer, circumstances, my people, and through the words in the manual. Seriously. Check it out.

Quite a humbling thought.

When the fridge was threatening my sanity, I wasted considerable time in my feeble attempts to fix the problem. I squandered additional minutes in phone Hades, waiting for an “expert” to help me. All while the manual lay two feet away.

Can you relate? In moments of angst, we will exhaust every silly avenue of worldly help and overlook the vast resources of Heaven a breath away. The most sacred of manuals couldn’t be clearer:

His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness (2 Peter 1:3 NIV).

God’s Word is our inexhaustible source of wisdom, peace, comfort, guidance, perspective, hope, joy, purpose, and so much more.

I am forever thankful for a Heavenly Father who is loving, patient, and kind. Who will gently move in me to seek His heart and His ways. And who will gather my trembling form under His wing and provide a steady, faithful refuge.

One beep-beep at a time.

He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. Psalm 91:4 NIV

Have We Checked the Manual? – encouragement on #FollowingGod from Leigh Ann Thomas @LThomasWrites on @AriseDailyDevo (Click to Tweet)

About the author: Leigh Ann Thomas is passionate about encouraging women to seek God’s best. She has penned four books and is a contributing author in 12 books and compilations. A writer and editor for the parenting site, InTheQuiver.com, Leigh Ann is also an AWSA Certified Writing Coach. She is married to her best friend, Roy, and they are thankful for the gifts of three daughters, two sons-in-law, three amazing grandsons and a grand princess. Connect on LeighAThomas.com, Facebook and Twitter.

Smack-Dab in the Midlife Zone—Inspiration for Women in the Middle, uses Scripture, prayer, and the power of story to show women in midlife how being smack-dab in the middle of God’s plans and purposes is the best place to be.


6 thoughts on “Have We Checked the Manual?

  1. Thanks for giving me a laugh at just the right time and yes I too am glad God does not sound like an annoyed parent. Yes read the manual 🙂


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