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There are many helps these days for the blind and the visually impaired. There are various types of magnifiers, audio and large print books, artificial intelligence apps to help someone ‘read’ the room, toys and balls that beep or jingle to help someone locate an item, as well as other devices that help the blind or nearly blind, navigate their world.

But there is one device I never thought I might need. The Liquid Level Indicator. This device monitors the amount or the level of liquid in a cup or glass. It either sounds a tone, vibrates, or both as the liquid level touches the tip of the device's prongs indicating when the container is full or nearly full.

Often, to keep a drink from spilling over, while pouring something into a cup, I will choose a cup that has a light or white interior. If I am having trouble seeing the level, sometimes I use my finger to gage when the water has reached the top. This can hurt and doesn’t always work when the liquid is piping hot or the beverage is intended for someone else. I have burned myself a few times, but I promise, I have never used my finger to test your drink.

I buy my coffee online and every morning my husband brews a fresh pot, just the way I like it. I stir in a bit of cream and a pinch of Splenda until it is the perfect camel color.

Oh I will drink coffee in restaurants. I’m not too picky, but when the waiter, kindly doing his job, keeps topping off my cup, my perfectly mixed camel colored coffee gets a bit confused. Often, I’m so engaged in a conversation that I don’t even notice when it happens. I look down at my cup and am surprised to see that it is full again.

This has me thinking.

One day a friend asked me, “ How’s your grace meter?” She was talking about being full or being empty when it came to being able to give grace to others.

When I thought about her question, I began to recount the Bible verses that express fullness, in regards to God’s grace meter. His grace meter never reaches empty nor does his grace indicator beep or vibrate. The Bible uses words like; overflowing, complete, sufficient, enough, abundant, lavished, laden and everlasting, when speaking of how much we are loved and shown grace by God.

Yet we feel a lack.

Paul saw it and I suspect he experienced it. He prayed for both the early church as well as the future church, knowing there would be a want for more.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13

When I am reading the Bible and I come across verses like this, I am surprised how one verse can fill my cup.

When I stop and look out my window and see plush green trees and flowers in bloom, I am surprised that this can fill my cup.

When I stop to listen to the words of a worship song I have heard a hundred times, I am surprised that I feel a bit of a refill.

When I take time with close friends, sharing our joys and challenges, my cup fills up.

When I stop to look at our Christmas tree and nativity, sitting in the corner of the living room, I am full.

Things, big and small, can deplete my emotional, mental and physical energy. One day I feel full and the next, I’m near empty. Sometimes my strength runs out.

But this morning, as I sip my perfectly brewed, perfectly mixed, camel colored coffee, I am surprised again by his goodness. It isn’t the coffee- it is God graciously, refilling me without me even knowing it. As I daily stop to trust him, even when I can’t see him, he is filling me back up. What is it I am feeling this morning? I guess it is hope and peace, gifted to me, in this moment.

If it spills because I can’t see the top of the cup - this is a good thing! If the Level Indicator isn’t working and my cup overflows with hope, joy and peace - this is a good thing!

Lord, thank you for your gifts that fill our lives with hope. Thank you most of all for your extravagant, abundant, lavish love that you poured out by giving us your son Jesus. I acknowledge that sometimes I feel a lack, I’m tired, even empty and in need of more. I pray for a fresh filling of your joy, your peace, and hope. Help me to stop and see your Gift - and be full again. In Jesus’ Name, Amen

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