"I love you sooo much, Mommy!" (Cue the batting eyelashes...)
Now, under any other circumstance, hearing this would mean everything to me. But today I knew Trevor's words were laced with ulterior motives.
He expressed his affections for me, hoping I would take him to see the trains.
I wanted to simply focus on his words, but I knew his heart wasn't in them like it is at other times. This time he had an agenda in cozying up to me.
I've been there before, too--in that place of coming with flattering words and an agenda. I come before my Heavenly Father with words of lavish praise, but I'm simply trying to butter up the Creator of the universe to pave the way for my impending requests.
It's not like my flattery will increase His love for me, or will warrant His favor resting on me. And just as I don't want Trevor using seemed affection to get me to do what he wants, I can't imagine it sits well with my God when I leverage my praise to get the only wise God to do what I want.
And I think that while He bids me to come and tells me to ask, He wants my affections when I'm bringing Him a laundry list of needs, and when I'm broken, and when I'm thankful, and when I'm at a crossroads, and when I have no other agenda than to say YOU ARE MY GOD and I just plain love you so much." Free of agenda, I love You, Lord.