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At this year’s county fair, we told our three kids that they could have four dollars each to spend on rides.  The older two started scoping out their options right away; but our six-year-old thought about it for a while, then said, “Actually, I really want to save up for a skateboard.  Can I skip the rides and save the four dollars instead?”

I admit, I was quite surprised by his willingness to forego immediate fun in favor of a delayed, longer-lasting reward.  He realized that the enjoyment of the fairground ride would be very short-lived; the skateboard, on the other hand, though still a temporary pleasure, could hopefully be enjoyed on numerous occasions.

But he would have to wait for it.  He didn’t have enough money yet.

My son’s reasoning that day challenged my own thinking on a number of levels:

Do we really live as though we are looking forward to the eternal pleasures that await Christians in heaven?

Are we prepared to wait for these eternal pleasures, even if it means foregoing certain earthly pleasures?  Even if it means enduring a potentially long wait?

What if the wait feels like it will never end?

Read more thoughts on these questions by clicking over to the full iBelieve.com article here.

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2 thoughts on “delayed gratification

  1. Thank you. I read this at i believe it is extrordinarily comforting to me as i have been waiting a long time for some things. It put some hope in my bank account. I have waited for God to stop my suffering and He hasnt, i had asked Him take me home and He hasnt. Still i had given up on having a family of my own bc it delayed i figured it might not b Gods will. I had hoped, but knowing that even tho i will never have the pleasure of an eartly family but there is something to wait for, i reason to hope. I figured well maybe i dont have to b hopeless as other enjoy earthly joys i have never, maybe there is more than this, stilli do get jealous of those who God has blessed with happy lives here, but i try to remember this is not my reward but it comes later even if i never see it here there is a purpose in the wait.

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