ctrl+z

Connor and I spent Wednesday together unexpectedly last week. He’s been having some tummy troubles which is even less fun because every time he says he’s in pain, we have to immediately question what he’s been eating in the event any of it may have been gluten-ified. In any event, he wasn’t feeling up to school so after some doctor visits, we were home and he decided he wanted to practice his keyboarding skills on my laptop.

After seeing just how large he could make the letter “a” in a Word document (did you know that the limit is 1,000?), we thought it would be fun I decided to do a practice run for CJ’s upcoming spelling test. I sensed it was going to prove challenging because while he was considering how to spell each word, he had to also find all the different keys. We got to the fifth word and he spelled it incorrectly. I let him know and he got frustrated and decided to delete everything back to number one. I gave him some grief. “Why would you do that? You were doing really well.” He looked at me with those huge eyeballs looking ready to create some tears and said, “I don’t know.”

The first thing that came to mind was to combine the “Ctrl” and “Z” keys to erase the damage done. He displayed a look of complete shock like I’d just performed a small miracle. I looked at him and smiled. I told him that we have a great option while using a computer to get back information we’ve lost in the event we didn’t actually mean to delete it. I told him that doesn’t always work but, since we were right in there working and it knew exactly what we had just done, that we could get it back without issue. He was pretty happy and merrily continued with his test (ultimately typing all the words correctly after the minor setback).

All I could think about was how most things in life can’t be Ctrl+Z’d away. Once the damage is done, its irreversible. That’s not always true (hence, the ‘most things’ qualifier), but certainly a fair portion of the time, history can’t be revised. We all have regrets, I would have to imagine, taking one form or another. And I’m sure we all have things we wish we wouldn’t have done; actions it would be nice to take a couple of simple keystrokes to remove entirely from our memory stores. But, as I was helping Connor repair his Word document, I also thought about how God already knew every single one of those miscues before we were born and how His grace covers all of them. He is our Ctrl+Z, in a sense.

Now, I’m not saying that by asking for forgiveness, we won’t have to pay any kind of consequence. I always think of a murderer serving out the rest of his/her days for taking a life. That individual can absolutely be saved and forgiven, but won’t be going home as a result of it. The damage was done. But that murderer can choose to learn and grow and become an engaged follower of Christ and based on my understanding of what salvation means, be welcomed Home with open arms. I hope the same for all of us; because, unfortunately, some of us have to fail multiple times before we finally find the right keys.

 

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