There are lessons that we just need to learn from experience because it is there that the lesson really sticks. I remember the times I get injured the most. Usually these come after a warning like: “don’t touch that.” Except we forget quickly and just don’t care until that moment when it all makes sense. I guess that is the point of impact.
My boys have gotten quite good at making s’mores. What amazes me is how many of them they can consume before I ever realize they have had one. It is a real gift. Of course who could possibly make a s’more without referencing the sandlot character Ham Porter and his ability to teach us all how to make one.
“First you take the graham, you stick the chocolate on the graham. Then you roast the ‘mallow. When the ‘mallow’s flaming… you stick it on the chocolate. Then cover with the other end. Then you scarf. Kind of messy, but good!” (Sandlot)
Despite my attempts to talk some sense into my kids, they insist that a burned marshmallow is equal to some sort of heavenly bliss. Despite my warnings of “you’re going to point your eye out” they still light them on fire and watch them burn. Except the other night it was a little different.
Sure, the mallow was flaming, but that is where things got interesting. My 6-year-old son, with the flick of his wrist, landed a piece of flaming marshmallow on his face. Let’s just say that it hurt. He claims that he lost control of his arm. I guess that is one way to explain it. I actually was reminded of that scene from Dennis the Mennis when he flicks the flaming marshmallow and it lands on Mr. Wilson’s head. In our case, it burned some skin on his cheek. He told me immediately that he learned a lesson. What lesson is that? “Don’t put hot marshmallow on your face.” I guess that works. As a parent, this is a little funny because I have been telling them all along that this is what could happen if they did not be careful.
In ministry I am often reminded of this with people. God’s Word warns us about the dangers of leaving His path. We are shown how dangerous it is to let sin rule in our bodies. We are warned about the wages of sin – death. Yet, it takes often takes some dramatic event for us to really get it. What would happen if we simply heard and listened to what God said the first time? Well, let’s just say that the world would be a different place. But, seeing as that is not the case, let’s learn from the mistakes we have made and the mistakes of other people.
There is a way which seems right to a man,
But its end is the way of death. – Proverbs 14:12