So, a couple weeks ago I added a new app to my phone: Life.
This is of course an electronic version of the classic board game I loved playing with my siblings when I was younger. I was determined to make it worth the 99 cents I paid for it, so I made myself try it out within 24 hours after I bought it.
Yeah, it worked a little bit better than I could’ve anticipated. I’ve been a little obsessed with it. The electronic version is easy and goes so quickly (especially if you only have 2 players and put the other player on fast forward) that I’ve played it quite a bit. This week was busier than last and the novelty wore off just a little so I didn’t play it quite as much.
Tonight I was hanging out at home, chilling and trying to encourage my stomach to not be angry at me, so I played it again. I won, just in case you’re wondering. But, I’ve had an interesting thought the last several times I’ve played.
In the game, they pretty much follow a straightforward path: you choose college or career, get married, buy a house, have kids (if you land on the right space) and continue until you get to retirement. Sometimes you make money or get Life tiles while other times you have to pay. Oh, and you frequently get $10,000 pay raises too. I know it has to be that way because you can’t set up a game the same way real life happens, as in with the idea that things don’t always happen as expected.
In my interesting mood of the last couple of weeks I couldn’t help thinking how simple it would be if life really worked out that way. If you always got to choose the more lucrative of two professions, if you reached a certain point and had to stop to get married, if buying a house was required at a certain point so you had to choose or if having children were simply a matter of landing on the right space. Oh, how easy that would be for everyone to have it laid out perfectly that way!
However, I understand that we’re placed here with a unique mission and purpose. The experiences we have are designed to help us become who and what our Father in Heaven wants us to be. We always get to choose, but things do happen for a reason, and we also must submit to God’s timetable for our lives, which means sometimes things happen sooner than you’d like while others happen later than you’d want or expect.
Life isn’t just a board game where you try to land on the right spaces so you can collect the most money. Sure, it’s definitely nice to have it, but it’s more a matter of having the experiences we need, at the right time, to help shape us so we can become who we need to become to do what we were sent here to do. It isn’t easy, but I’m certain it’s always worth it.