For a special occasion, Gail received a pair of house plants from her cousin. Though to say they were plants may be overstating the case—they were more like sprouts. Her cousin had planted them in rich, dark soil held in pots glazed with floral designs.
Determined to honor the gift by helping the plants thrive while at the same time beautifying her home, Gail placed the pots on a narrow table just under a large window where they would get plenty of sunlight during the day. Then she looked carefully over the instructions that had come with the plants so she would know how to care for these particular ones.
Continuing a theme (coincidentally) from earlier this week: waiting. We don’t like waiting. Life is too short. We already sleep away about one-third of it. In the United States, people spend 112 hours (more than four days) per year waiting in line, and up until the COVID pandemic, a commuter spent an average of 38 hours waiting in traffic annually (reference.com). Many, if not most, of us can become pretty frustrated by the need to wait.
While many businesses have been built around the idea of minimal or no waiting, how often do the things that really matter in life come immediately?
On a summer day, a group of youth went to an amusement center for a day of fun together. The center included an arcade where players could accumulate tickets when they won games. Then they could redeem their tickets at a prize counter.
A member of the group used his tickets to buy a pair of novelty glasses. When he wore the glasses, everything looked warped like in a funhouse mirror, and everything was a different color than when seen with the naked eye. He laughed out loud and had many of his friends try the glasses on. Soon, nearly all of them had gotten a pair of their own.
The book of Judges in the Old Testament holds many stories of those whom the Lord raised up to deliver the tribes of Israel from their oppressors. My personal favorite is Gideon because of the experiences he had where the Lord reassured him and built up his confidence to do something that conventional wisdom said he had no chance of doing. And to try involved great personal danger. But this post isn’t about Gideon.
Samson sits at the other end of the spectrum for me because he seems to be an example of someone who could have done great things, but what he wanted was more important to him than what the Lord had planned for his life. As a result, he met a tragic end.
One of the aspects of the Savior’s atoning sacrifice and power that is meaningful to me is the breadth and depth of experiences that He can bring us through—large and small. Life carries many challenges and tragedies that can bring us to our knees.
But sometimes, the fights we engage in or the traps we fall into aren’t comparatively significant. Jesus is aware of them nevertheless. He suffered for us so that we can overcome whatever separates us from God, regardless of the degree.