Perceptions: Holding steady is no small feat
I received an urgent text from my wife. The fountain in front of our house had sprung a leak. I added the broken fountain to my to-do list, along with the fence that needs rebuilt, the floors that need refinishing, and the garage that needs repainting.
When we built our house 15 years ago, I assumed we had come to the "happily ever after" part of the story. All that was left was to kick back and live the good life in our shiny new castle.
Instead, a battle with dark forces of decay began. No matter how fast I worked, I could not stay ahead of all that was falling apart.
Nothing is more elusive than newness, be it the smell of a new car, the feel of a crisp dollar bill, or the excitement of a new marriage. Newness is as impossible to cling to as a handful of sand.
Forces of decay are at work in me too. Just holding steady is no small feat. Every now and then, I win some personal victory. I exercise a few days in a row. I treat my wife with more thoughtfulness. I pray. After one of these tiny advances I am quick to nominate myself for sainthood. I apply wildly optimistic words like "growth" and "maturity" to myself.
In reality, I am working like a madman just to keep from slipping so far back into the pit that no one can tow me out. Maybe this is one reason Jesus said we must become like children to enter the Kingdom of God. We need not aim at being some sort of Superman. We just need to get back to where we started.