How did a game that makes people angry make it on the list of top downloaded games in Google Play with over 50 million downloads?
It wasn’t because of it’s graphics — they were extremely simplistic. It wasn’t due to it’s riveting gameplay — all you have to do is guide the bird through a series of gaps in vertical pipes.
No, this game plays to the stubbornness in human nature. Something in us just doesn’t want to admit that something apparently so simple is beating us. The only way we can redeem ourselves is by starting the game over and trying to beat our best. So the reviews on the game complained of the addictive nature of the game. Other reviews told stories of extreme frustration, even rage caused by a seemly innocuous game. Eventually, the creator of the game couldn’t handle the furor it created and pulled it from the market.
Something about this game reminds us of life. It gives us a little peek into what drives us and what frustrates us. We hate failure. We make mistakes all the time, and every time we “crash” we blame ourselves and try harder. But our frustration ends up interfering with our gameplay. And too many times we end up doing the real life equivalent of throwing the smartphone across the room.
The answer to a chronic “Flappy Bird” outlook on life is to let go of the “high score” mentality, slow down, and enjoy the journey. Beating yourself up won’t help you grow closer to Christ. Taking time to enjoy the good gifts He has given will.
It’s true that sanctification progresses toward a goal of Christlikeness, but that is not something that we can reach by angry determination. Instead, it is something inward that works itself outward. Christ calls us to His rest:
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” (Matthew 11:28-29)
“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” (Psalm 46:10)
“For whoever has entered God’s rest has also rested from his works as God did from his. Let us therefore strive to enter that rest . . . ” (Hebrews 4:10-11)
The real labor of the Christian in sanctification is to truly rest, in His truth, His promises, His love, and His salvation.