It started so simply, I nearly missed it—the most sobering conversation of my adult life so far.
Last night, my son, Matt, was lamenting how long it was taking to have his old keyboard instrument repaired and returned to him. I was confused because he seemed so attached to the new one we’d bought him. I asked if he’d prefer to use the old one again when it’s fixed.
“Noooo!” he exclaimed. He insisted that the new keyboard was a huge upgrade, detailing some of its techy bells and whistles.
On a whim, I asked if he’d missed any of those functions while he was using the old keyboard.
“Not really,” he said, half-smiling. “I loved that keyboard.”
I finally understood. He was attached to it now for the same reason he didn’t know its shortcomings then: it was his first keyboard.
That led to a conversation about what it’s like when what we have is all we know.
“It’s like fish in a pond,” I mused. “They think the pond is everything because they’ve never seen a lake. If you take them to a lake, they’ll think it’s everything because they’ve never seen a river. And river fish think it’s everything until they get to the ocean…”
Matt replied, “So we’re all like fish in a pond. We don’t know what we’re missing yet.”
What happened next was pure Holy Spirit.
His point took us from fish to a discussion on dating at his age, my adolescent years, marriage, spiritual growth, his observations of my growth as a parent, his feelings on abortion, God’s Grace, and humility.
Man, I wasn’t expecting it. I wasn’t expecting that conversation to still be with me as I got ready for bed. I wasn’t expecting it to be confirmation of something I’d talked to God about earlier that night. I wasn’t expecting the revelations and applications that hit me in the shower this morning. I wasn’t expecting it to be the clarity I’d been praying about for years.
The relationship that seemed like a waste of my whole life at 19, was just a pond.
The God-fearing man I met and married after that relationship imploded in my 20’s, was just a pond.
The maturity and character I’d witnessed in that man when we battled Matt’s 35% chance of survival at birth, was just a pond.
The times I struggle with my God-given purpose, doubting my abilities as wife and mother, are just a pond.
Watching our son grow and mature in service to the Lord, in his music ministry, becoming our church’s interim organist this month at age 15—as awesome as that is, and as grateful as I am for the Grace that’s brought us here—it’s just a pond.
At my highest highs and lowest lows, God has proven that He always has more in store. Better days have always followed.
So whether this season of your life is a rough one or your best one yet, I pray for you the humility to see the bigger picture. In the tough seasons of life, marriage and parenting, hold on. It’s just a pond; better days are up ahead. In your victories and successes, stay humble. It’s just a pond; better days are up ahead. Whatever season you’re in now, this isn’t the end—not by a long shot. There’s more because eye has not seen nor ear heard the things that your Father has prepared for you (1 Cor. 2:9). So, in your rejoicing and in your weeping, know that God isn’t done with you yet. Keep expecting the God of your ancestors to increase you a thousand times more (Deut. 1:11) than this pond.
And when He does…when you just can’t imagine it being any better, remember that you still don’t know what you’re missing yet. The One Who gave up everything for you says it’s still just a pond.