Tuesday, July 20, 2010

43 Quintillion

Who didn’t love to play with a Rubik’s Cube back in the 80’s? Being an athletically challenged, backward, nerdy little kid, I loved that thing! Did you know that there are 43,252,003,274,489,856,000 possible configurations to the Rubik’s Cube, according to rubiks.com. Allowing a second for each turn, it would take 1400 trillion years to go through all of the possible configurations and more than 300 million Rubik’s Cubes have been sold worldwide. If all of the cubes were placed on top of each other, it would be enough to reach the North Pole from the South Pole. Think about that number again 43 quintillion configurations – but only ONE solution.

I couldn’t begin to count the time spent trying to solve the Rubik’s Cube in our house alone when I was a kid. If one of us kids didn’t have it in our hands, either Mom or Dad did. We would sit twisting and turning that little box for hours on end, never successfully solving. As soon as I would get one side solved, maybe on a good day two sides, everything else was a wreck and I would mess up the good part trying to fix the bad sides. Everybody who was anybody wanted to answer yes to the cool question “Can you work a Rubik’s Cube?”. I can still remember being amazed when I would hear “So and So can work it.”

Eventually we kids got smart!!! (We thought!) We heard this idea at school that if you peeled the stickers off and then placed them where you needed them on each side, it would be good as new and you could start all over and it would LOOK like you had worked it. The only problem was those stickers were terrible. Once you peeled them off, the didn’t restick well and they would curl up and fall off, revealing to those you had bragged of your accomplishment to that maybe you weren’t so slick. Then out of desperation we learned to take a flat screwdriver and pop one of the corner pieces off so that we could take the rest of the cube apart. Once in pieces, we could put it back together the way it should be and start all over. This little solution had a problem too. After so many desperate attempts, the pieces became loose and then the cube wouldn’t stay together very well. One minute you would be twisting and turning your little heart out and then the yellow corner piece would fly right off, deep into the cushions of the couch along with all of the crumbs and pocket change.

I can think of several similarities in our Christian lives to the Rubik’s Cube. There are countless configurations out there for us, but only ONE solution, and that solution is my friend, Jesus. He is the answer to every question, every problem, every situation. Just like I wasted time trying to master that little thing, we waste so much time trying to master this “faith” thing in our own wisdom. It never works in our own strength. After trying the best we know in our abilities, we get discouraged that we can’t make this “thing” work and we start cutting corners. We move a few stickers around and make our Christianity “look good” for a turn our two, only to notice that our attempts are crinkling up and peeling off more with every little move we make. After that we get REALLY smart and we allow everything in our lives to fall apart and assemble it back together and its all good for a little while, but then OOPS! We find our selves in a big mess again, one side’s ok, but those others are a jumbled mess, and apart we go for repair. We do that for so long, that after a while the people that make up some of the pieces in our life, no longer want to be part of the game and the ties of that relationship grow looser and looser until at some point they just don’t attach at all any more.

43,252,003,274,489,856,00 configurations – 1 solution. The choice is ours. Are we going to move the stickers, pop it apart, or seek the ONE solution?

We will never figure this thing out on our own. We have to stop trying and striving. He wants us to come along side Him and let Him do the twisting and maneuvering. He knows exactly what goes where and which way to turn to get there.

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.” John 14:6

Will never be able to say “I worked it” without Him.

Royal Princess Daughter Of The King
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  1. Very cool! This is one of my favorites :)! I think everyone can relate.



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