But toddlers who have recently learned to walk fall down a lot. My sweet girl must fall 50 times each day. Maybe more. She loses her balance, trips on toys, shoes, and invisible landmines. Just this week she has skinned her knee on the driveway (while holding my hand), fallen into the coffee table head first, knocked the top of her head while she was underneath the table 3 different times in 2 days, and hit the back of her head on the wall. In fact, right now, she is whining because she lost her balance and fell on her butt on the linoleum in the kitchen – something that occurs at least once every 15 minutes.
You may think from my description that Lexi must be unusually uncoordinated, but she’s not. She’s just your average baby trying to perfect her toddling. She’s experimenting, trying to understand what the natural law of gravity is all about.
By mid-afternoon she is tired of falling and begins to cry out of frustration. She is exhausted from having to pull herself back up all day long. But she has one more day of walking experience under her belt. Although her daily improvement is so gradual it is hard to pinpoint, it’s there. And one day in the not-so-distant future, we will look up and Lexi will have a fall-free day.
Of course I have to liken this whole experience to my spiritual walk. I must fall 50 times each day. Maybe more. Some falls hurt worse than others, but none of them are fun. And pretty soon I get tired of falling and pulling myself back up again. I get frustrated with the whole process and want to quit. I think, “I’ll never get the hang of this; I’ll always fail.” But that’s not true.
Each day the Lord shapes me to be more like Christ, little by little, and the minute progress goes largely unnoticed. But it’s there. And one day in the not-too-distant future, I will look up and think, “Wow! The Lord had nothing to work with, and look what he has transformed me into! He used his grace, mercy and Son to change me into someone who can walk without falling.”