I think I am into “simplification” right now. I just believe with all my heart that is a message for us. And what could be simpler than “bubbles?”
As a preschool teacher the word “bubbles” conjures up images of that soapy, messy stuff. As a grade school teacher up it brings to mind…….standardized testing!!!!! ICK! Those bubbles of the little kind that a student must fill in and darken with a number 2 pencil so that the computer can grade it. It must not stray outside the bubble, and no extra erasures on the answer sheet! I won’t even start on standardized testing…that another blog!!
As a special education teacher, I had to read the tests to my students (except the reading test, which even though not on their reading level, they had to “read” it alone..uh-hum) For some, darkening the bubble into a certain pattern on the page proved to be the exciting part of the test. Others simply were discouraged by having to be so “perfect”.
As I walked around the room reading, I had to encourage many of them to “fix” the bubbling. One had the darkened image outside in the margin, one simply missed them completely. Finally Marley decided he had to say something. “Mrs. B. Why do these bubbles have to be so perfect? You always tell us that we don’t have to be perfect in here.” Whoa. He was right. Efforts are all that are required.
What if our Christian walk was like that? What if we had to fill the bubble perfectly each and every time we did something? Unfortunately, I believe some Christians believe that, thus they give up. Then try to fill out the bubbles on their own. That is simply not possible. We cannot achieve perfection in and of ourselves. Only Jesus did that. He just expects us to surrender. He wants to live His life through us.
Marley finally gave up. “Mrs. B., I cannot do this right…it just won’t stay in the circle. Will you shade inside the bubble for me? You can just do that work through me!” I was very thankful for his IEP accommodations at that point!
Then it hit me…. well said little one, well said.
Ephesians 2:4-9 But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ— by grace you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
IN CHRIST ALONE
*google image, NIV Bible*