I realized something yesterday about my character that I’ve probably known for sometime but never fully came to grips with and tried to fix. I’ve been so frustrated with my music career lately, and with life in general. I’ve been frustrated with the way my house looks, the way I do my makeup (even after watching 500 YouTube tutorials) and just about everything I want in life. I want results automatically like many of us do. I don’t want to slow down, learn and put in the time that’s necessary in order to master some of these things.
While at my Mother’s one night, hanging with my almost two-year old son Tristan at the kitchen table, I really wanted to make a bow as a decoration for Tristan’s upcoming Mickey and Minnie Mouse-themed party. I planned to arrange black plates to make it look like Minnie and serve food on it, very cute! but I digress. It was almost 9:30pm at night and I got the great idea of finding a quick YouTube tutorial on bow making. (Nothing is ever quick!) I got some satin ribbon from my Mom, because she has satin ribbon just lying around, and found an “easy” two and a half minute DIY bow tutorial. Well It was anything but easy. I sat there for a good 15 minutes trying and re-trying to make this darn bow that should have taken two and a half minutes according to the tutorial. The problem wasn’t the video, the problem was that I wanted to master bow making in two and a half minutes. I was going very fast, skipping ahead and getting frustrated with every tie and re-tie of the bow. So when my fingers began to feel numb, I finally decided to stop trying to make this bow and watch the video distraction free. By re-watching the video more closely I realized that I had missed a very important step. So I tried it once again and this time the ribbon started to resemble more of a bow. Granted, I STILL was unable to accomplish bow-making (maybe it was the tutorial after all). Coincidentally, my son was watching a sesame street music video featuring Bruno Mars called “Don’t Give Up”. I had to chuckle a bit at God’s sense of humor. But it did hit me how I often skip ahead in order to succeed quickly. I believe we all do this in some areas of our lives and unfortunately it’s a product of the age we live in.
Author and speaker Joyce Meyer explains this issue perfectly. I am paraphrasing here, but she says that we should not covet the success of others if we are not willing to put in the time and work that they did to achieve their success. In essence, getting jealous or depressed over someone else’s achievements will not help you succeed. Putting the time and work in, though, will. When it comes to holiness, don’t skim through the pages of the Bible hoping something will sink in and that you will be sanctified within two and a half minutes. It takes careful study through each chapter to really understand and then apply what God’s Word says. When it comes to learning to cook well, don’t throw everything into a pot and hope for the best. Read through the directions carefully, get all the right ingredients, measure everything out the best you can and the results will be a tasty meal for your family. And even if it’s not all that tasty your family will still love you for trying (been there done that!). I think you get my point.
All in all, if you want to accomplish anything worthwhile in life, don’t skip ahead. It’s a great life lesson that I am just now learning in my 30’s and I hope that you will also take to heart. I’ve got to get back to my bow making so pray it doesn’t take me until my son’s third birthday to get it right.