4 out of 18 isn’t bad, I suppose…but it is more than I had expected and more than I hoped.
I was asked to do something a little artistic for an up-coming event and it involved transforming a light bulb from its original purpose. I had to remove the end of the light blub, drill through the internal glass, take out the filament and clean up the rough edges. It sounds fiddley and it was. On my first attempt things were going well, the end came off, the glass drilled easily enough, the filament was removed but as I cleaned up the edges I noticed that I had also broken the bulb in the process and there was now a large hole in the wrong end. I refined my process and tried again, this time with success.
However, it was not the only bulb I broke and the challenge began to feel a little ‘hit and miss’.
The problem was the inherent fragility of what I was working with. Light bulbs can last a surprisingly long time under perfect conditions but if you expose them to vibration, jolting or if you accidently hit them with a broom they don’t respond favourably.
There are aspects of our lives which are more fragile than we realise – on the outside we may appear secure, bright and shining but the reality can be quite different – it is well reported that 20% of the population struggles with some type of mental health challenge each year and, truth to tell, we are all susceptible to anxiety, grief, loss, and fear.
It is ok when things are calm, when all the ‘ducks are lined up’ and when we are in control – the problem is violent upheaval which is what happens when one or more of the ‘wheels fall off our cart’ (too many metaphors I know!).
Life is complex at times and has a way of bringing up things which makes it feel like someone is trying to drill through the glass. Most of the time it is ok but there are other moments where it leaves us shattered and permanently damaged.
When I broke my light bulbs I just discarded them and grabbed another – not so easy to do with a life – what we need is someone or someway of rebuilding what was lost.
I am glad that one of the names given to God is ‘the repairer of the breach and the restorer of a place to dwell’ Isaiah 58:12
Perhaps you need His gentle touch today?