Image by Gerd Altmann of Pixabay
When our computers, phones, or tablets are being ornery, we know that we can reboot. When all else fails, shut the technology down completely. Leave it for thirty seconds, then start it up again.
I learned this lesson particularly well during cataract surgery. I was lying on the operating table with my eye fastened open. The surgeon had made the slit in my eye, ready to remove the clouded lens and replace it with the new clear one. At that point, he said to his assistant, “Do we have another one of these?” Someone answered from the back of the room, “No.”
The surgeon said to me, “We’ll just spray some water solution on your eye to keep it moist. This will just take a few moments.”
At that point, I was grateful for the calming drug I was receiving through a vein in my arm. A few sprays of water later, I heard, “We’ll shut it off and reboot it.”
He said to me, “This will just take a few more minutes. You’ll be fine.”
After what felt like half an hour, and a few more squirts of water poured over my eye, I heard, “Great. We’re ready. Let’s do this.” In just a few more minutes, the surgery was complete.
As they rolled me out of the operating room, the surgeon thanked me for remaining calm. The next week at my post-surgery check up in his office, he explained that he used a special machine for cataract surgery to remove and replace the lens of my eye. The electronic machine hadn’t worked properly at first. He had to reboot it. With a clean start, all was well. He thanked me once again for my patience during surgery.
I smiled and said, “I was praying. I didn’t know what was wrong, but I hoped and prayed the “reboot” would work.
When people tell me the date on which they were saved, I congratulate them. Inside my head I think, maybe you had a miracle, but my time with God keeps needing a reboot. Just when I think I’ve made a commitment to follow Jesus totally, temptation comes. I get led astray. God and I have a few conversations. I think I’ve got this faith thing figured out. Then something happens, and I am questioning God again. I’m so grateful that God offers us, “endless reboots.” Our mustard seed faith needs a renewed infusion of God’s Spirit to keep us growing in faith and trust.
“Reboot” is a new word in today’s technological world. Of course, it would have been a difficult concept for Jesus’ contemporaries. It’s a great word to describe what happens when we pray, study our bible, worship with our church family. To God, I give thanks for God’s patience, love and unending forgiveness, the “reboots” in my life. “Unless you be born again…” was not immediately clear to Nicodemus. “Reboot” and “rebirth” are not so radically different as they seem.
Never think you aren’t saved. God is with you always, pushing, prodding, rebooting your faith.