Some Assembly Required

huffy-52-polycarb-portable-basketball-hoop-with-helix-liftA couple days ago I did something that I “swore” I would never do again.

My son Isaac turned 7 years old this week so Denise and I got him a portable basketball hoop as a gift. We got it on sale at Fred Meyer and then I put it in the back of my truck and we drove home. About a mile or two from the store it hit me. I yelled out loud: “What have I done? I just bought another basketball hoop and I’m now remembering what a cursed time I had putting the last one together!”

Denise and I laughed a bunch, but down deep there was nothing funny about the situation. I would soon be called upon to assemble the hoop and that was not a happy proposition. You see, we used to have a portable b-ball hoop up in Stanwood. When we moved we decided to not bring it with us – it had too much pain and suffering associated it with. You see, when I put that one together years ago (for another one of our children’s b-days) I all but lost my sanity. What started out as a nice “bonding moment” with my kids turned into a sweaty session of extended rage. The directions seemed to be printed in some indigenous African dialect and the drawings were hieroglyphical in nature. I couldn’t seem to control my rapidly dissipating patience and it was coming out on my family.

Suffice it to say, “The sun did not go down on my anger,” but it get pretty close to dusk when I completed the project. Sadly, it was too dark for the kids to even play with it that night!

So, now I had another assembly project awaiting and the memories of days gone by were haunting me. With resolve and a hopeful demeanor I began the process (and even invited my boys to join me). I’d like to happily report that two hours later the hoop was assembled. My limbs were still attached. My family still loves me. And I am still SAVED.

I wrote this on my Facebook status: “Just put a basketball hoop together for Isaac’s birthday and I am still saved.” I got a number of great responses on my Facebook page but the one that has had me thinking all week comes from one of my Bible College professors, Ron Williams. Ron has been a missionary, a pastor, a professor, a leader of our Foursquare movement, and a writer of biblical commentaries. Basically, an all-around brilliant man of God. He wrote in response: “Just like the hoop…never-ending eternal security.”

Now, I’m not wanting to debate the theological merits of “once saved – always saved” (eternal security) but I do have some observations that I think apply to us all today.

Difficult times seem to have an acute way of keeping us closer to the Lord.

God will often use trying situations to both reveal the character of our hearts and remind us of our intense need for a Savior.

Just like the hoop, we have a never-ending need for God’s salvation. He is available to us in our most difficult times. Look to him for assistance. Call on his name for help.

You see, tough times will come and go (never-ending hoop) but our God is so powerful. He is mighty to save.

I’d like to say that I will never assemble a basketball hoop again (or any other Some Assembly Required item). But I know better. God knows better.

One comment

  1. Tim Clark says:

    Yeah, John. I don’t think guys like you and me are intended to put anything from a store together (frankly, I think God was laughing louder than you or Denise), but we do need the constant reminder that we can’t depend only on ourselves. We need God. We need others. Every time my Dad comes over to the house to fix something, I can’t help but think that some broken and not-put-together things in my life are way beyond my ability; I need my heavenly father to show up.

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