perspective on life

Lesson From a Stone Wall

There’s a busy road I take several times a week to and from my daughter’s preschool (last year it was where my son went to preschool as well). Several months ago while driving down this road, I glanced out my window and noticed the wall, it’s strong and elegant, much more than the standard picket fence we commonly see. As I would look at it with a glance every time I passed it, my eyes always came a place in the middle of the wall, where the stones became much smaller and were just stacked all jagged and random. It bothered my OCD tendencies, “Why does the wall look like that? Why did they just make a big pile of stones? Did they run out of big rocks?” And that’s how it went on. It became my ritual, every time I passed the stone fence I focused on the pile of little rocks and rolled my eyes at how disorganized and haphazard they looked.

life perspective

A few weeks ago traffic on this usually fast-paced road was stopped because of construction, and I found myself in front of the stone structure. This time, as I did my ritual look-and-sigh at the stone wall, I noticed something I had never noticed in my hurried glances: the random pile of tiny stones in the middle, wasn’t a random pile at all. Suddenly, in a moment of stillness, I saw the complete picture that I’d been missing all along. All of the little stones I thought had been a random pile, were actually pieced together very carefully, creating an intricate tree design with the rocks. What I once rolled my eyes at as being haggard, all at once became beautiful and deliberate.

life perspective

The other night, I was driving on this road yet again, but alone; no kids, no distractions. As I passed my little stone wall and smiled at myself remembering my foolishness, I thought how I looked at the wall before was so much like how we sometimes think of ourselves. Maybe in our hurried, tired minds we get frustrated and we feel like a pile of random rocks. Like we don’t belong in the middle of this beautiful stone wall. Surely the Lord ran out of the good talents when He made us, so here we are, just a bunch of little rocks thrown together. Do we view our own work-in-progress lives as a random pile of rocks that just doesn’t belong? Perhaps instead we could think of ourselves (and others) like the stones in the middle of wall: what we see now as being a random pile of rocks, is actually the most beautiful and deliberate part of the whole wall, and if we just give ourselves time and step back, we can see it. Maybe what seems to be just a pile of random rocks now, is our Father building His most beautiful masterpiece.

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