I would beyond gladly give up everything tangible in my life ….would willingly trade it ALL in…would swap everything material I have or might ever have for one thing: a magic wand.
It doesn’t have to be pink and sparkly.
It doesn’t have to make pretty little chiming noises or leave an airy wave of glitter behind it.
It can be as plain as plain can be.
I just want to be able to wave it over any situation in life and make it better.
When I find out a friend has been diagnosed with cancer? Wave it. Cells stop turning against themselves and cancer is cured.
When I learn that someone I love truly needs something tangible? Wave it. Items in place and problem solved.
When I find out that a loved one’s spouse has made an awful decision they regret with all of their being? Wave it. Time reverses and new memories and facts are put into place.
Oh my goodness. If I ONLY had the magical means to change and reverse the course of the boulders that life throws at us…couldn’t I make this world such a better place?
Yes! Well…maybe. Actually I don’t really know.
I mean…a few months ago one of my kids started doing poorly in school. We worked and tutored and bargained and threatened…but this precious offspring chose not to do the tasks it would take to bring the grades up. When I got a grade-book alert on my phone that told me another ‘0’ had been entered, I died a little on the inside. I knew the next step was to take away the favorite activity. I wished and wished with all my heart that I could somehow wave that magic wand and erase the grade….maybe talk to the teacher or ask my husband to grant some mercy. But…I didn’t have that wand. So because consequences had been stated, consequences happened. The activity was lost, and the
mother child was heart-broken. No magic save took place. Instead, that kiddo learned that work needed to be done. Papers needed to be organized. Follow-through needed to happen. And then, after a loooooooonnnnnngggg period of hard work, the grade came up to a ‘B’, and then an “A’. The pride was absolutely beautiful to see on that baby’s face. A lesson was learned that will last a lifetime.
If I had done what I wanted–waved my wand and just “fixed” things–my child might have been able to participate a bit longer in the favorite activity. At some point though, the trouble would have caught up…and this kid would not have had the tools to deal with it. My idea of a “fix” would have, in fact, ended up being detrimental in the long run.
That’s an example of something that most of us know….lessons and trouble and hard situations are learning experiences for us. They refine us and teach us all kinds of things we may not WANT to learn, but certainly need. But what about other situations? Ones where there seems to be no lessons to learn?
How about when a child is killed in an awful car wreck? So so so many people pray to turn back time on that one! But…what if at her funeral..two big burly unbelieving men stand up and give their lives to Christ? What if the only way those men would have ever realized how real God is….was to see the girl’s family praising Him and speaking about their daughter’s hopes that certain big burly men would turn to Jesus?
If I had done my magic wand wave on that one (and believe me I wished and prayed to be able to do that!)…there would have been one temporary save and two eternal losses.
There have been so many times that I have wanted and wished to “save” or “fix” a situation and not been able to do a thing about it but sit by and feel helpless: friends or their kids receiving scary diagnoses; watching people walk away from their families; seeing people I care about get awful unfair treatment; knowing that someone lost a job. Heck…every time I turn on the news and see what’s happening in the world I want to wave my arms wildly and shoot magic “fixit” beams from my fingers and straighten the whole dang mess out!
While none of these things are–in and of themselves–good things….perhaps the good that COMES from them outweighs the bad that happens DURING them.
Think about all the ways that God brings good from stuff we can’t begin to fathom could ever have an atom of good in it:
A young mother looses her battle with cancer…and thousands of people who follow her journey learn of God’s faithfulness and make commitments to their families.
Atrocities beyond comprehension are shown to a young man in the Congo….and God helps him give a home to 26 girls and help save hundreds of children more.
Even personally…a monster storm throws every aspect in my life to the wind (pun intended)…and brings me closer to God and aligns my family with His plan.
I’m relatively sure that if I possessed a wand I would have prematurely waved it in all of these situations….and totally messed up the amazing ways the stories ended. As much as I think I might make an excellent queen-of-the-world, it’s probably a good thing I’m not actually in charge. It’s safer that I don’t have the ability to fix everything….because I think I’d fix things that aren’t actually broken. Really….I have something better than that wand. I have the certain and true knowledge that God not only knows best….but can actually make things happen for the best. I can use my “special powers”–aka prayer–and go to Him with all the problems that keep on coming. He knows what should be done, and He can do it.
So maybe it’s a good thing I don’t have a wand. With my junky memory I’d probably lose it anyway. Then, when my 9-year-old found it….heaven help us as the world would probably suddenly filled up with sparkly blue unicorn-dogs.