When you’re 4, everything is news. And, when you are a big brother, you are the smartest kid in your family. You know, because you’ve met your 2-year-old sister that still thinks Daddy is mommy’s brother most of the time.
My son, Ryder, is convinced he is the coolest kid on the planet and is not shy of making this understanding known to the world.
He is also super independent, which is a trait I admire in him. Ryder loves to “help.” One of his favorite things to help with is making brownies.
Ryder Making Brownies:
- Mom pre-heats the oven.
- Mom gets out all ingredients and measures each correctly.
- Mom pours them into the bowl while Ryder holds mom’s hand.
- Ryder mixes for approximately 25 seconds while making approximately NO PROGRESS in actually mixing the ingredients.
- Mom finishes mixing, pours the batter into the pan and puts the brownies in the oven.
- Ryder licks the spoon and asks every 2 minutes on the dot if the brownies are done.
Before you judge me as a mother (too late, I know — although, I promise to give you many more reasons to judge me, if you’re patient) know that I think it is a blast to bake “with” my son.
I am under no illusion that in any way can Ryder bake brownies on his own. If you ask him, though, he would say that he made the brownies. Sometimes, he shares the credit, but most of the time, it’s, “Daddy, can I have one of the brownies I made?”
I know, cute kids story. But, it’s profound and here’s why.
At least for me, I believe God gives us kids to show us a blatant, slap you in the face, “why are you so dumb” picture of us in relationship to our Creator. There are 2 things that stood out to me when thinking about Ryder baking brownies that I do with God ALL THE TIME!
The first: I rarely give Him credit for things I accomplish. The more time I spend with God, the more I realize that I have laughably little to do with the successes in my life, but my natural response is to own the credit. There are times that I sincerely direct to God, but I often carry the burden and feel I deserve the reward.
The second: I believe I have arrived. I believe that I can, start to finish, create the result I am looking for in life. I believe I made the brownies. When I experience a desired outcome, I fully believe I have made it to “the moment.” To me, this is the most heartbreaking realization. I look at my life as it is and I think, in my minuscule picture of a dream, that I am right on track to whatever plan it is I have made. I believe that once I conquer the current situation and arrive victorious to my throne of momentary success that I have experienced completeness.
Ryder cannot bake brownies. Even when Ryder learns how to bake brownies, it does not mean he could bake anything and everything. Even when he understands the science of baking and the art of knowing when to follow and when not to follow someone’s recipe, it does not mean that he is a master chef.
It is a vital moment in my life when I admit that I cannot do it. I can’t do any of it.
I cannot be a mother that raises children to be world changers.
I cannot be a wife that sacrifices my desires daily for the good of a man that I have chosen to love.
I cannot be the most creative person in my workplace and have all the best ideas and the most skilled execution.
I cannot be the friend that is always there with the right advice or the right silence.
Here is the best part of the entire story. I never asked Ryder to make brownies.
I would never expect my little, too talkative, sword-yielding, red-headed son to be able to complete a task so far beyond him.
My God is no different. He knows I can’t make it. He has never asked me to do all those things in my own strength.
The important thing is that I am allowing myself to be led by the hands that can measure life correctly and pace the steps on time. Only my Creator-Redeemer knows my heart. Only He has earned the credit for any success in my life. Only He can walk me through the failures that weigh too heavily on my mind.
I’m four years old and my God LOVES guiding me through life.
Why don’t I let Him?