I met with Christopher’s teacher last week about his progress in school. She starts off by telling me he can do better. She told me she knows what he is capable of and she was going to push him. She told me how he will sit and stress about #3 when there are 17 answers to go, not wanting to skip and solve the next problem until the one he is working on is done.
Then I said in a small voice to myself, poor kid he is just like me. I gave her some insight into Christopher’s personality. He is really determined and hard on himself at the same time. But he will also say, "I can't", because he doesn’t want to try and then get it wrong.
I know this because I am the same way and I have long ago observed this behavior trait about him. It breaks my heart when I know he is struggling with something. I put him to bed recently crying about LEGOs. He had already started this model over from the beginning because he missed a step. He was working on it again and had come to a step where something didn’t fit like it should. He said, “If I have to start this all over again, I am going to crash it on the floor and I’m never playing with LEGOs again.”
I knew what that heaviness feels like - when you think you’ve got to go back to the beginning, it is overwhelming and disheartening. You don’t want to do the steps over that you’ve already done after you’ve already spent so much time on it. To start over feels like you have made no progress at all.
I looked at where he was in his LEGO instructions, and I looked at his model. He had something upside down. I got him out of bed to show him what was wrong. Nothing had to be done over. He was able to go to bed, looking forward to finishing his project and not starting over.
I believe that God knows what the start over heaviness feels like. The bible says in Genesis 6 that "He was grieved in His heart " when he made the decision to destroy all that He had created and called on Noah to prepare for the great flood.
When the rain stopped and the earth dried from the flood, God promised Noah that there would never again be a flood to destroy the earth. He sealed His promise with a rainbow; establishing a new beginning.
God does not want us to grieve in our hearts. I imagine he does not want us to destroy what we have worked so hard to build. He planted seeds of greatness inside all of us. I imagine it breaks His heart to see us struggling with giving up or casting the seeds aside.
What I have learned as a wife, a mother and an individual is that I do not have to grieve in my heart about starting over. God will show me that I had something upside down. He will comfort me and show me how to start fresh. He does this for His children just as I did it for Christopher.
I still often wonder, why do we have to be tried? Why do we have to struggle? Why can’t this be easier? But every time I succeed at anything it makes me stronger. I also know if I weren’t challenged I would be bored. What would I have to hope for and believe in if everything were perfect? I don’t anticipate or welcome storms in my present but I do look forward to each and every rainbow in my future.
And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. ~Romans 5:3-4