|Alec, Ian and Owen enjoying LEGO magazines from a friend|
In the city of Iquique where our family serves, you will not find a Starbucks, Walmart, Wendy’s or Target (nor dozens of other places we enjoy in the States.) In fact, there is one McDonald’s for 250,000 people and on any given day it might be out of soda, ice cream, French fries - or the bacon for its specially offered bacon cheeseburger! But there is a certain store that is a shining star in our kids’ world - the LEGO store. It bears mentioning that the LEGOs are imported and as such cost twice as much as they would back “home.” Nonetheless this brightly lit beacon of red and yellow plastic calls our children’s name each chance it gets!
Our visits there are few and far between, based mainly on our kids’ ability to save their allowance, birthday gifts and Christmas monies to pay for their next collection. However, the staff recognizes us when we come and seems to enjoy the enthusiasm of our young shoppers (mainly our three sons), especially once we explained the patience required of them to reach this point.
Recently our boys found themselves in a position to visit the LEGO store once again. It was the height of summer tourist season and honestly I cringed at the thought of the crowded mall that awaited us, but they had been quite longsuffering through the holidays and a month of traveling and now faced school just around the corner. On our drive there, the thought occurred to me that I should encourage the boys to pray that we would find a good sale. A dear friend once shared that she always prays specifically before shopping trips and is blessed and encouraged to see how God answers and provides! No sooner had I thought this, however, when my doubtful self silently replied, “But what if they do pray and there is no sale? After all, aren’t LEGOs a silly thing to pray about? If they pray and there’s no sale, maybe they will feel disappointment towards the Lord.”
As it turns out, I was the one with a lesson to learn. Arriving at the LEGO store, we found an unprecedented sale including several sets at half price! My conscience smarted as I shared my sons’ delight in their new purchases. A short while later, I pulled them aside to unburden my heart. I told them how I felt the nudge to pray but chose not to because I did not have enough faith. I pointed out how God is so kind that even though I didn’t pray, He still blessed them with a great sale. And I shared how this should remind us how much He cares for us, even down to the “silly” details of our lives.
Spiritual lessons can be learned anywhere. In my case, it was a lesson learned in the LEGO store!