Unable to continue sleeping, I woke up around 3 am this morning to the pitch-black darkness of my room.
And after laying there and staring at the ceiling for a few minutes, I decided that I would turn on the light and grab the book I’ve been reading on-and-off this week, and continue where I left off.
So I got out of bed and tried the light switch, but after a few unfruitful clicks, I realised that the light bulb had blown #sigh
My bedside lamp was not an option either, because the bulb on that had also blown earlier in the week, and I had yet to replace it. (Don’t judge me lol) 😉
On to Plan C – which was to light one of the candles in my room and use that instead.
So I located the half-full box of matches using the light from my cell phone, selected a match and hit it against the striker. Nothing happened.
Then I chose another one and repeated the procedure. And again, nothing happened. And again…and again and again until about 20 matches later, with 2 sticks left in the box – I was done. And put the now-nearly empty box back on the bedside table.
I sat on the edge of my bed a bit frustrated because I was wide awake, and reading that book was something I really wanted to do at that time. And now I couldn’t.
As I sat there and looked at the pile of tiny sticks on the floor beside my bed, my thoughts immediately went to the many other things I had tried in my life that ended in a ‘pile of tiny sticks.’ The many attempts at something of significance that eventually ended in failure. I’m sure you have many of those too.
Maybe it was finding love, and after dating a few people and ending up broken-hearted and disappointed, you concluded that ‘they are all the same’ and closed your heart. Maybe you were trying to get an education. And year after year of applying and never receiving an acceptance letter/countless exam sittings that never yielded any positive results, moved you to give up.
Or maybe it was finding a job, and after sending hundreds of applications without a single response, positive or negative, you concluded that ‘there are no jobs around’ (for you) and then stopped trying. Maybe you started a business. Or even several businesses, and loss after loss made you close your doors, stop taking orders and trying to find customers.
Whatever the case, we’ve all had countless opportunities to give up and throw in the towel on our hopes and dreams, concluding that they would never happen for us. We walked around with a chip on our shoulder and a salient wound in our hearts that only comes to the fore when someone brings up the said topic.
But then as life would have it, at one point or the other, we do revisit the scene of the crash and are forced to come to terms with what is there. My hope is that instead of being angry and bitter that the plane crashed, we’d look for the black box and find out what happened. A post-mortem of sorts.
You’ll be surprised to find that maybe its something you’re doing wrong. Maybe its an attitude of the heart. Maybe you need to get some external help. Maybe it was an organizational mismatch, maybe it just wasn’t the right opportunity. Maybe you need to muster the courage to call that person. Maybe, maybe, maybe.
Whatever the case, you’ll never learn how to fix it, until you find out where its broken. And part of that involves facing whatever ‘it‘ is and purposing to learn from it to become better. With every breath I take, I’m reminded that the mere presence of that breath signifies that I am alive, and with that life, a chance still exists to do and become everything God intended for me to do and become. And when those inevitable roadblocks come and I fall seven times…what should I do? Get up Eight times (Prov 24:16) 😉
So with that realization, I picked up the matchbox again and opened it, looking down at the 2 match sticks remaining. The ones I’d judged like the other twenty, concluding that nothing good could come out of them. And I smiled to myself when I thought of just how funny it would be if one of these last two match sticks was the one that would light that candle. And I smiled even more because this was starting to feel like a set-up. A God-moment with a lesson to learn. And now that I had learned it, I just knew that if I tried again, the match would surely come to light.
And as I hit that match against the striker, sure enough. There was light! And I chuckled, as though that was the sign I had been waiting for. Because I guess in some ways, maybe it was 🙂
What things have you given up on, and written off after numerous attempts?
Find a candle and light it today (ideally when its dark lol) to just remind yourself that no matter how many times ‘it‘ has failed in the past, all it takes is just 1 match to turn the darkness into light. One idea, one meeting and one opportunity to change your life.
Trust God for that ‘One.’ He is more than able.