Open wide your mouth and I will fill it. But my people would not listen to me; Israel would not submit to me. So I gave them over to their stubborn hearts to follow their own devices. If my people would only listen to me … Psalm 81:10-13

When my parents were both in a nursing home, they were committed to maintaining a sense of independence. They weren’t alone in this, it’s a value that the world encourages. Marketers aim their advertising at our desire to make choices that provide maximum benefit to ourselves, with little thought for others. However, a strong commitment to independence can make our hearts stubborn. If we aren’t in the habit of listening to others, it’s also difficult to listen to God.

Opening our mouths indicates a trusting attitude. If we’re going to let someone put something in our mouths, we must trust them. It also indicates a willingness to receive. Receiving from others is humbling, and having someone feed you even more so. Yet God only desires what is best for us. He is so willing to bless us if we would have the faith to come to him in humility, to metaphorically open our mouths, our hearts and minds to those things he wants to give us.

It requires a change of attitude, a change of mind-set, to be on the receiving end without making ourselves worthy of his blessings. We aren’t trying to bargain or earn our way into God’s favour, we simply receive. It means seeing our heavenly Father as eager to give, not holding back and ourselves as little children who don’t have the resources to adequately reciprocate. Rather we’re happy to be willing receivers of blessings that will enrich our lives.

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