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Think back to a rainy childhood day… Rain came down so hard the day before that your plans for outside fun were washed away, but the next day dawned brightly. As you ran to the window and peeked through the blinds – Behold! The rain had left behind glorious puddles everywhere. Your eyes glanced over the driveway, sidewalk and finally rested on the street. You knew today was going to be a puddle jumping kind of day. With glee, you ran to get your rain boots and quickly pulled them on without a second thought. Dressed only in pajamas and hair wild from the night before, you ran out the front door to the nearest puddle. With the door askew and mom calling out your name, you set your eyes on that first puddle and jumped right in. Your only goal was to make the biggest splash possible. Pure abandon, joy, and freedom filled you with every splash and splatter of water as it covered you from head to toe. You are a puddle jumper!
Life is a series of puddle maker vs. puddle jumper moments. Do we dare to jump boldly into the puddle of life or do we remain stuck in our own puddle of self-pity?
A puddle maker prefers the comfortable routines that characterize life. Stepping out into the uncertain, which is sure to cause waves, is a source of anxiety for puddle makers. Times of self-pity, fear, followed by tears, push back and an all around “I don’t want to” outline the traits of a puddle maker. Life is not a reach out and grab it proposition, but more of a let it happen to me. Words that describe puddle makers are passive, receiver, content with status quo and sometimes stuck.
There are times in my life that I have been a puddle maker sitting in self-pity rather than stepping up and out to do something about it. I can be a puddle maker one day and a puddle jumper the next.
A puddle jumper seizes life and seeks to live it to its fullest. Brave risks followed by a journey into the unknown characterize a puddle jumper. Active seeking of what possibilities are out there gives puddle jumpers the opportunities to make the biggest splash. Words that describe puddle jumpers are giver, seeker, brave and abandon. It is a time of going after life knowing that life does not always come to you.
If I am honest, I tend to hover in the puddle maker corner because going big or going home is not my life’s motto. BUT GOD…
God takes all of us, bold or fearful, and makes us into the best person we can be. He shows us that sometimes jumping is the best way to approach life. Other times, we need to step back and regroup, to allow His promises to wash over us one more time so moving forward can take place again. Both are needed and one is not better than another.
We can be the best possible version of ourselves when we trust in the promises of God. Believing God is who He says He is and will do what He says He will do, eases the anxiety that can overwhelm a puddle maker. Embracing God’s love and promise of grace when we jump too fast and without thinking, assures the puddle jumper that God’s got this. God’s word teaches us this about His promises…
For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God. 21 Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, 22 set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. 2 Corinthians 1:20-22
Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him. James 1:12
A “Yes” in Christ is our guarantee that we are His. Persevering through the messiness with faith, affirms our inheritance of God’s promises.
Puddle makers – you are going to have to jump to fully live the life God has written for you. Puddle jumpers – remember that making the biggest splash is not always the answer. A pause in your pursuit will allow for the preparation needed to live your best life in God.
Whether you are a puddle maker or a puddle jumper, you have the chance to trust God’s promises for guidance, focus and perseverance.
How will you allow God teach you today as you strive to balance between the two?