A couple days ago, I decided craft-time with my children was in order. Generally, I avoid 'crafts' like the plague, since more often than not it involves an incredible amount of mess, mopping things up with various cloths and cleaners, and a few tears from myself and/or my children. But I figured, shrinky-dinks, not too much mess, should be okay. And it was. And I'm glad I gave it a shot, because God seemed to speak to me through that little project (isn't that just like God, to give object lessons through shrinky-dinks?).
It would seem that to "shrink your dink", you can use an embossing tool rather than the oven. Since I have an embossing tool that rarely gets used and is a little more exciting than the oven, we decided to try it out. But as these little creations started to heat up, they curled and bent until it was this incredible, gnarled mess. I stopped and stared at this thing - did I do something wrong? Is the dink faulty somehow? Should I just give up and chuck it away? I figured I'd give it another try and see what happened, and wouldn't you know it - right about the time it looks completely mangled is when it all starts to flatten out and turn out right. Huh. And amid the whoops and squeals of a bunch of delighted children, I realized that there have been many times where God has prompted me (or flat-out told me) to do something that I would begin with excitement, just to lose enthusiasm when it didn't work out the way I expected. I hesitate, thinking "Is this really right?" (note - questioning Him is not generally wise). How many times, if I had stuck with it, would I have seen it all turn out just as He planned? How many times have I given up and missed being a part of something big He is doing?
The Lord is gracious and merciful; no doubt He will give me more opportunities to obey Him. By His grace alone, may I not grow weary in doing good. And maybe next time I won't melt my embossing tool, either.