“Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.” James 1:12 (NIV)
One of Mia’s favorite things to do is build Lego sets. She has had three surgeries over the last two years that required extensive recoveries with very limited physical activity. For an active little girl, that period of time can be tough. So, building Lego’s became a huge sense of joy. Even after her recoveries, she continued to build Lego’s. She received a few sets for Christmas this past Friday and started on them immediately. On Saturday, she started to become frustrated at one set in particular as it was missing first one piece, then two pieces, then six pieces. After substituting out of her “extra pieces” box she has collected over time, she continued. When she finished the windows section, she found that they were flimsy and kept coming undone and became frustrated again. Under my direction, she took a break and went to her cousin’s house who soon came back with her to help. Together, they worked on the windows section again, fixed it and continued again. Soon after, they informed me that more pieces were missing. By this point, Mia was extremely frustrated. I told her that she needed to walk away from it for a little while and come back later with a clear head and fresh perspective. She did NOT want to do that. She’s a bit strong-headed and competitive (a known Robertson family trait!), and she was NOT going to let those Lego’s get the best of her. She was determined to win! When I saw her attitude, I instructed her that she had to walk away. I was giving her no choice in the matter. She and her cousin went outside for a while and jumped on the trampoline and rode their bikes. They came inside about an hour later, continued building and by that night had finished an entire section. They could not wait to show me their accomplishment!
Isn’t that the way life is? Sometimes, when we are faced with an obstacle that we are trying to control all by ourselves, we may need to take a break to clear our head or ask for help. And if our attitude is not what it should be, we may need someone close to us to give us a little kick-in-the-pants to strongly encourage us to get back on track.
Jase has said many times, “It’s not just about the destination. It’s also about the journey.” He means that while we definitely want to go to heaven, we can also have a wonderful time here on earth. God has given us life, a life that we can totally enjoy. John 10:10 says, “… I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.”
The next time you choose to take on a project or decide it’s time to push through an obstacle, imagine that crown or sense of accomplishment on the other side. Go for it! However, remember that you may not be able to do it alone. Realize you may need to take a break if it starts to change your attitude or priorities. And don’t be afraid to ask for help. All of these things will help you enjoy not only the finished product but the path it took to get you there.
The more you enjoy the process, the more that crown (or Lego town) will mean to you!
Have a productive week!