“How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow? Your life is like the morning fog—it’s here a little while, then it’s gone.”
The story is told of a man who went to a toy store to buy something suitable for his young son. He looked high and low for something just right; he wanted a gift that would be perfect. Perhaps an educational toy? The sales girl was helpful. She steered him to many different toys, but nothing was what he was looking for. He didn’t want just any toy– he wanted a memory maker, and something that would last.
Then at last he saw a rather plain-looking box. It wasn’t shiny or glossy like some. But the description on it was interesting, and it said it was suitable for ages 5 through 95. That kind of intrigued him and he read the fine print. It seemed to be a puzzle or game of some kind or another. He shook the box and heard the pieces rattle inside. It seemed to captivate him.
The box said that it came unassembled. Parental help was helpful. There also was a statement that the contents were designed to teach a person how to deal with life, and required some diligence and intelligence to put it together. But there in the smallest fine print, “this toy was never intended to be put together perfectly.”
The man realized that this was the ideal gift for his son. It would teach him that life really never can be assembled quite right. There will always be something missing, or a critical flaw. And there is very little we can do about it. Perhaps the most significant lesson learned is “humility.”
That is why we must turn to God. He alone can make our lives work. The father wanted to teach his son that critical lesson. He wanted to prepare him for failure and frustration. Life never works out the way we want it to, and we should accommodate that idea.
“All have been given a box of tools, a formless rock and a book of rules. And each must make in his life, a stumbling block or a stepping stone.”
12 “In the few days of our meaningless lives, who knows how our days can best be spent? Our lives are like a shadow. Who can tell what will happen on this earth after we are gone?”