By Lindsay Dryer
A Valuable Lesson From Paw Patrol
I have to believe I’m not the only mom who sometimes feels like Paw Patrol is the soundtrack of my life. I’m not even a huge fan of my kids watching a lot of tv, but if it’s on, there’s a 90% chance Paw Patrol is playing. My kids love it so much that I finally got smart and set the DVR to record every episode of the show so it would be available anytime I need 25 minutes of quiet kids on the couch. C’mon. You know what I’m talking about.
Last night before bed, the kids requested “just one episode” of Paw Patrol, and so I sat on the floor folding mounds of tiny laundry and listening to the narrative of another grand rescue by those brave pups. Except, two minutes into the episode, I realized it was the one…the one that drives me absolutely CRAZY.
In this episode, there’s a villain named Lady Bird who loves all things shiny. Throughout the episode, she is on the hunt for anything that shines, and she steals it as her own to put in a lair of sorts. (Honestly, it kind of reminds me of that show Hoarders, but that’s a different issue.) She calls this shiny stash her “reflection collection.”
I never thought the Holy Spirit would speak to me through a Nick Jr. show, but He is pretty creative, so I guess I’m not surprised! As I was cringing listening to Lady Bird’s annoying voice, those two words hit me like a ton of bricks. Reflection collection. She is so obsessed with herself that she spends her days collecting items that will allow her to stare at her own reflection. All at the expense of other people.
Do you have a reflection collection, Lindsay? I love the way He prods so gently to get my mind thinking and my heart stirring.
I began thinking of what this “reflection collection” might look like in real life for a person like me. No, I’m not running around town stealing shiny things from innocent bystanders (thank goodness!), but is my life a collection of moments that are focused inward?
Let me just be really transparent with you for a moment:
When I’m frustrated because my kids are fighting with each other for the 99th time in three hours, is it because I want them to be best friends and I want them to show the love of Jesus to one another? Highly doubt it. It’s most likely because they’re driving me crazy, and I don’t want to hear their arguing anymore, and I’m trying to get something done, so they need to stop.
When I’m scrolling through social media, and I see something that strikes a jealousy cord in my heart, is it because I want the best for my friend and I’m celebrating with her? Of course not! It’s because I feel like I’m missing out or that I deserve more than what I already have.
When there are challenging circumstances in my life and I begin to cower in fear, is it because I’m placing my full trust in Jesus? Absolutely not. It’s because I’m considering my own strength instead of His.
INWARD OR UPWARD?
I’m realizing that so often we are faced with the option to either look inward at our own reflection or look upward to Christ. Sometimes we don’t even make the wrong decision out of selfish or impure motives. I think sometimes we just get so lost in our own navel-gazing that we forget to look up.
We’re encouraged in Hebrews 12:2 to “fix our eyes on Jesus.” In the Greek, that literally means to turn your eyes away from other things and fix them on something (in this case, Jesus). It’s really easy to walk through life focused on ourselves, but it takes intentionality to focus our attention on Christ.
I don’t know what this looks like for you in your current season of life. It might mean fixing your gaze on Christ while the chaos of life feels too much for you to carry alone. It might mean holding on to hope when you receive devastating news from the doctor. It might mean literally taking your eyes off things that are causing you to focus inward (social media, tv, etc.).
All I know is that there is only One who is worthy of a reflection collection. Only One who can stand to have every eye fixed on Him. Only One who won’t crumble under the weight of our attention. Only One whose reflection can change our hearts and lives. That’s Jesus.