It must be because of the warmer weather. I've heard two moms in the last week or so express their concern that their kids were not yet able to ride a two-wheel bike. A four year old boy and a seven year old girl are caught in an on again off again relationship with their training wheels. Moms are exasperated and starting to wonder how old is too old to not be two-wheeling it.
I reassured one of the moms that my sister, who is a very bright and successful nurse today; was eleven years old before finding success on two wheels. Amy says she was a bit younger than that, but she has no blog so my word stands.
I remember the day I finally took off on that purple Schwinn with the banana seat. I had lost my training wheels and if memory serves me, there was no longer an offer to reattach them. I had done the "loose" training wheels that makes you kind of wobbly and lets you lean dangerously to one side before stopping you from tipping. I had one training wheel for a while which is the most terrifying of all possible situations. Finally it was two wheels or two feet. My bike was in the garage and once again; on this summer afternoon, I decided to hop on and probably kill myself. My dad was not around to run along side and then behind me to give that push-off that feels like the final launch into the arms of Jesus. I climbed aboard and.....off I went! I was riding a two-wheeler! Down the sidewalk and around the corner with parted down the middle hair flying. Honestly, I've no idea how old I was. Given my athleticism and natural drive I'd guess it was the week before I started driver's ed.
I think learning most things in life continues to happen under the two-wheeler rule.
People can run alongside and try to steady us. They can give us a good hard shove that might get us a few feet of progress before we wipe out. They can tell us how to do it and cheer us on with promises of how great we'll feel when we accomplish our goals. They can give us training wheels that they take away and then give back when we fail a few times. Ultimately, we're gonna have to hop on the banana seat and do what needs doing, even if it costs us a skinned knee or two.
As a Christian who tries to counsel and teach others with what little bit I know; I find spiritual matters to work exactly this way. We rely too heavily on books with formulas and theories when we need to embrace the Bible. We want others to tell us what to do when what's lacking is we ourselves, on our knees waiting on God's counsel.
Surround ourselves with good teachers and mentors is important. But let's not settle for living our entire lives with training wheels. It's never going to feel like life is your own until you just ride it out for yourself.
The good news is that Jesus never stops running alongside us.
Go ahead, jump in the banana seat.
I want to learn only this from you: did you receive the Spirit from works of the law, or from faith in what you heard? Galatians 3:2