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?