One evening after a wearisome week of April Showers, the most unusual cacophony of quacking and splashing greeted our ears as we entered the park. Soon we spotted the source of the racket- a gleeful family of ducks swimming in a murky mud puddle at the foot of the walking path. Unable to contain all of the run-off from the rain and the overflowing pond, the drainage ditch running between the pond and the pedestrian path had flooded. The result was an ankle-deep mud bath where once only green grass had stood.
Luke watched the feathered creatures flinging mudpsplats at one another and then he turned his head to gaze at the beautiful pond just 200 yards away.
"Ducks!" my young son hollered in his limited toddler vernacular "Come to pond! Pretty pond!" He flapped his arms like the waterfowl themselves and pointed toward the clear and landscaped waters. Oblivious to the mecca beyond their puddle, the murky ducks continued to squawk and splash. Luke tried again and again to the lure his feathered friends to the pond of promise, but with no avail. Finally, I convinced my tireless toddler that the ducks were satisfied with their stagnant puddle, and we left the foolish fowl behind.
My firstborn rarely accompanies me to parks these days, but I've thought about those muddy ducks countless times over the years. As I imagine their dingy white feathers and sludge-slathered beaks, I wonder if they ever discovered the pond just over the hill. And then, in my quiet moments of introspection, I wonder how many times I, too, have settled for mud puddles when the serious waters of life wait just beyond my murky pool of play
In his timeless classic, The Weight of Glory, C.S. Lewis declares, "If we consider the unblushing promises of rewards promised in the gospels, it would seem that our lord considers our desires not too strong but too weak... We are far too easily pleased. Like an ignorant child who goes on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by an offer of a holiday at the sea."
Oh, that I will dare to leave my slum behind and exchange my comfortable puddle for a wild walk on water!
The Overflow: Jeremiah 17:12-14 (The Message)