Process and Progress

So many people have asked me if I built the sandcastle from Big House, and I kindly tell them, “No, It was a team effort.” I do find sandcastles therapeutic and much fun. They are definitely a process, very much like us. Foundation is key to a successful castle, and many times, it is where many participate briefly and quit quickly. What is always interesting to me is that during the foundation phase of the sandcastle masterpiece, very few people, if any, observe the efforts…they are wanting to see the final product immediately. No one wants to watch someone piling heaps of sand for an hour or two…so they leave.

The next phase is where creativity takes shape. This is when you hear comments such as, “What is that?” “Whacha doin?” “You need some help? (I love that question and always answer with a resounding, YES.”) Most people still have no clue what is being created, but the sandcastle is starting to, at least, look cool and interesting. Walls, Towers, Bridges, Roads, and whatever else you want to dream about has a place. Sometimes, a short break is necessary to step away from the castle to gain perspective. This is why we schedule retreats and vacations.

The final phase is what I call the Sculpting Phase. Details, Details, Details. Stone, brick, steps, windows, shadow lines, doors, words, swimming pools. Call me a sandcastle nerd, but I actually have a sandcastle tool kit for all the intricate sculpting. The kit even came with a pneumatic sand remover for mortar lines (it’s a straw).

This is the thing. Some of us are detail driven, some are gifted with ideas and conceptualization, most understand the importance and value of foundational principles. All are key to sandcastles and life. I’m always asked after building a sandcastle, “Are you finished?” I kindly tell them, “No, the next phase is tomorrow.” They typically reply, “Well, what if the waves knock it down?” I smile and answer, “Then, we start over again if we are given another day.” We are a work in progress with increasing talents and gifts. Use them, develop them, grow them and invite others to join you in the process. Love Deeply. Live Simply. Every now and then, build a sandcastle and think of the incredible plans God has for you. Allow Him to sculpt you into a masterpiece.