Assembling a Battleship

Prince wrote a song about it. Techies warned of collapse when it occurred. I’m not sure why the beginning of a new century was more anticipated than any other day, but it was. I remember as a child calculating that I would be 41 when the century changed, and I wondered if I would be too old to enjoy it. What I pictured as the best way to celebrate when I was 10 didn’t look possible or probable for someone 41. But I did have a wonderful New Year’s Eve 1999. I sat at home with my family and assembled a 1000 piece Lego battleship with my son. We built a fire in the den and watched TV and plowed through endless pieces of Legos. I don’t love Legos; I love my son. Sharing that time with him made for a delightful evening doing something I would never have chosen on my own.

During an interview for a Christian radio station, Jase Robertson from Duck Dynasty said that it isn’t so much that he loves duck hunting; what he loves is to be with his family, and duck hunting is how his family chooses to spend time together. I have done dreadful, gross, tedious things with someone I love, and it became a fun adventure. I have had what should have been a really fun thing ruined by the selfish behavior or rude attitude of the person I was with. Life isn’t about what we do; it’s about who we do it with. I’ve had miserable meals in incredibly wonderful restaurants. I’ve had delightful picnics with peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. The food and setting can certainly add to the moment, but it cannot “make” the moment.

The wonderful stories and best memories of my life have far less to do with what I was doing than with who I was with. The best, most exciting things we do can disappoint us when we are unable to share them with someone else. The most mundane or painful moments can become precious when we share them with someone we love.

God knows this about us. He created us for fellowship with him, and calls us to fellowship with each other. He promised, “I will be with you always, even unto the end of the world.” It is our purpose on this earth to share our lives with him. Ignoring his presence can rob us of celebration and joy in the best of times and cause us to despair when our circumstances disappoint us. Awareness of his presence can bring joy to disappointment and awesome worship to the times that delight us.

To celebrate the new millennium, I built a Lego battleship. And the memory of that night is still precious to me because of who I spent it with, not what we did. David realized in Psalm 139 that anywhere he went, God was with him. When we consciously choose to acknowledge God’s presence, our joy is multiplied and our difficulty is mitigated. May each of our days be characterized by sweet fellowship with our heavenly Father.

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