Legos…. I don’t know how big a part of your life these little blocks are. I don’t know if you have fond memories of building things with them or of watching your kids play. Maybe not. Maybe you hate them. Maybe you step on them in the middle of the night and wonder how such a small piece of plastic can bring so much pain. Maybe you have ruined a vacuum or two because of them. Maybe you have searched for the right “(microscopic) gun for this guy” or “(microscopic) hair for this girl” too many times to appreciate the magic of Legos any more. If you are not in the height of Lego world right now let me tell you, they have come a long way. Now they all come in sets to build specific ships, towns, buildings, or vehicles. There are also approximately 2,043 Lego shows on Netflix, 5 million YouTube videos, and a movie for goodness sakes. I know Legos.
For my 10-year-old guy it is all Legos all the time. I think for Christmas and his January birthday he received every Star Wars Force Awakens Lego set. These $100 boxes are filled with 20 plus bags filled with thousands of tiny pieces that all come together to make a Millennium Falcon or At At Walker. (I know Star Wars too.) And this kid blows me away every single time. He won’t start a set until he knows he has ample time to finish the whole thing. For example, he saved the Falcon for Spring Break. He sits down on his floor, door closed, and for hours he goes through every page in the instruction manual, every tiny piece, step by step until he emerges with the whole ship. This amazes me because he cannot seem to pass a math test and yet…. Anyway, his room is completely filled with these precious masterpieces. In fact, when we moved to the Ranchito the room we chose for him was the one with all the built-in shelves for this very reason. (Books? Who needs books?) So, my 10 year old son has a 5-year-old brother that has no idea he is 5. He wants to watch, do, play, be all the same things his brother watches, does, plays, and is. This, of course, includes Legos. So little brother has received some very paired down versions of big brother’s sets. (But NOT DUPLO!!! Don’t be trying to pull any of those BABY LEGOS on him!!!!) Here is the problem. He is in fact 5 years old. He does a pretty good job with the Legos but he cannot do what his brother can. His little hands just can’t quite work the same. So inevitably about 10 times a day he becomes frustrated with a piece he can’t get on, or one that keeps falling off, or the ship that has fallen and broken and comes to me crying. I send him straight to Big Brother because there is no way I know what is supposed to go where. Nope, Big Brother is the master builder in our house.
What does all this have to do with my prayer life? Well, the other morning as I tip-toed (okay, maybe stumbled a little) out to my quiet prayer spot in the pre-dawn fog, I found my mind and heart a little foggy too. I couldn’t quite finish a thought all the way through. I felt like there were so many things that needed prayer and the Father’s attention. The kids’ tests today, her attitude, my friend’s marriage, my husband’s job, and all the activities tonight…. Jesus, please. Anxiously my heart raced beneath it all. And then I had this little vision. I pictured myself hauling a big box of thousand of Lego pieces boldly into the throne room of my Heavenly Father (Hebrews 4:13). In the silence of my living room I could almost hear the unmistakable crash of the box being emptied (you know the one, Moms) in front of God. I saw myself pouring out all the pieces of my anxious heart… My husband, each one of my 4 children, their worries and concerns, my tribe, their families, my community, my dreams, even the soccer and baseball practices, ballet rehearsal, and T-ball game that were charted for today…. There I sat, in the middle of the pieces. It looked like a big fragmented mess to me. I didn’t know how to make sense of it. I had lost the instruction manual. I didn’t even know what all those pieces were suppose to build in the end. But here is the thing, I was presenting them to the Master Builder. He not only had the instruction manual, he wrote it. He not only knew what to do with the pieces, He created them.
Prayer is my passion. I am serious about prayer. I have journals and notebooks and strategies. I fight hard in prayer. But sometimes I just can’t find my way and all I have is a big mess of pieces. I have found three scriptures that I pray EVERY SINGLE DAY help ground me no matter where I am. Maybe they will help you too as you drag your mess before the Master Builder.
“Teach us (me) to number our (my) days (today) aright, that we (I) may gain a heart of wisdom.” Psalms 90:12. Yes, Lord. Teach me to number this day aright. Show me what is important to get done and what is not. Show me where I am most needed and where I can let it go. Calm my anxious heart and replace it with a heart of wisdom as I look at this to do list, as I field these responsibilities, as I steward these children, as I seek to please You and bear fruit for Your kingdom. Jesus, just show me how to get the tacos on the table before we have to leave for the game. Show me how to be in two places at once. Number my steps, my priorities, my words, my prayers correctly today so that when I lay my head down tonight I may have gained a bit more wisdom in this frazzled heart.
Equip me today as “God’s workmanship created in Christ Jesus to do good works (today), which God prepared in advance for us (me) to do (today).” Ephesians 2:10. Jesus, I never want to lose sight of the fact that we walk this faith out for real, on the real ground, in the middle of our real days, with the real people you have put in our lives. I know that you have created me and though I am not saved BY my good works but by Your grace, I have been saved FOR good works that you have planned for me to do. I acknowledge that you not only have a plan for my life and my legacy, but you have a plan for my day- today! Equip me to accomplish those good works. Illuminate those good works for me today. Show me the person who needs a simple smile, create the space I need for listening to my children, give me the words I need for the hurting friend. Make me ever mindful that I am your workmanship, your handiwork, your masterpiece. Help me protect my witness when I am frustrated, or anxious, or sad, or hurried. I know that my life is simply made up of all my todays so show me those good works and equip me in them- TODAY.
“If your Presence doesn’t go with us (me) don’t send us (me) up from here. ” Exodus 33:15. Lord, if I am trying to head in a direction today, be it in my head, my heart, my car, my conversations that your Presence is not, stop me. If my desires for myself, my family, my tribe do not match your best for them, for me, make it clear. I only want to be on the road with you. Lead me. Show up. Give me the wisdom to turn off all the distractions and listen for Your still, small voice saying, “this is the way, walk in it.” (Isaiah 30:12). Because in the end, tonight as I turn off the last light and clear the Aussies off the bed to find a spot, it wont matter what I have gotten done or checked off my to do list if your Presence has not been with me the whole way. Humble me and quiet me every step along the way so that I remember YOU are my very great reward (Genesis 15:1).
These are the pieces that I dump before The Lord each morning. These are the prayers I check back in with as the rollercoaster of my day starts it’s climb and then rushes down. Teach me to number this day aright, equip me for Your good works today, only let me venture where Your Presence is leading. I am like my littlest…. My hands can’t quite work all of the pieces. I don’t know where it is all supposed to fit. I don’t always have the big picture of what my day, my walk, my family, my life is supposed to turn out like in the end. But God is so much more that a big brother that is a little bit farther down the line. He is THE Master Builder. He has manual and the picture and the patience to get down in the mess with us. Allow Him to take that first piece and then find the next one and the next and watch what He can build with our fragments. So, dump all of your pieces out before Him. Don’t be afraid of the crash or the mess. He isn’t. He has a great plan not only for your life, but for today. Give it to the Master Builder and let Him do His thing.