Is it important to wait? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.
4,000 pieces of gold.
That’s a hefty price for a young man playing a game, but in the world of Final Fantasy at the time, that was a lot. Gold pieces were the main currency then and at the area of the game you were in, most battles gave 100-200 pieces. You would have to stay at the inn at times to recover which would cost 100 pieces of gold.
However, if you wanted to get the silver sword then, you had to pay 4,000 pieces of gold. Only one person likely in your party could equip it. The next most expensive weapon costs 450 gold. Still, there were other expensive items. A bracelet you could equip costs 1,000 and level 3 spells cost 1,500 to learn and level 4 costs 4,000 to learn.
(By the way, I had to look up the prices of other items aside from spells, but silver sword stuck with me.)
If you wanted to get this sword, you had to work for it. This kind of thing is something called grinding. Why? Just think of how your going to work can be called the daily grind. Some people do it just to gain experience to level their character up. Either way, most people don’t really like grinding. It’s very repetitive.
By the way, I haven’t even mentioned buying healing items and deals like that for what can essentially be the first dungeon the party goes through in the game.
However, if someone engages in this in many a game, they are prepared not only for the next dungeon, but also for several later dungeons. Those who rush through because they just want to get on with the story are more likely to suffer and in the end, have to do their own form of grinding still when they keep encountering an obstacle they can’t get past and grinding can be much harder later on in a game.
Okay. This is interesting, but what has this to do with Christianity and apologetics?
As I thought about it, it came to mind that this is a lesson in delayed gratification. Consider this. How many problems in our society come because we do not like to wait? We live in an instant society. Everything we want comes immediately. We can put something in a microwave or get something out of the freezer or drive where we want to go and with the internet, we have instant communication. Paul would love to do in the Roman Empire what we can do today.
In some ways, that can be fine, but in others, if we think we have to wait for something, then we will suffer in the end for it often.
Let’s start with money where this started. How many people are in debt today not because they had to buy an expensive item like a house or needed emergency surgery that was really expensive, but because of out of control credit card debt? How many people just buy items constantly and don’t really think about the price?
I considered that my early habits in gaming came to influence my early thinking with money. I learned the value of money there and to this day, I make it a point to have money in the bank and be light with my spending. Because of that, when I do want to splurge, I normally can without much difficulty.
Recently, a friend gave me a pass to the World War II Museum here in New Orleans. I only had to pay for parking. When I was done going through the museum, I got to the gift shop which had books. I bought a couple of them there. It cost me some naturally, but I was able to handle it. This also after having a month where I had to go to the doctor twice for a really bad sinus infection after the conference, the second being a follow-up, and I currently have no health insurance.
Still, I have money in the bank and my money in savings I haven’t even had to touch since moving to New Orleans. I pay my bills responsibly and I use plenty of programs to get free Amazon gift cards and to get deals when I do have to go out into town. My parents were always frugal with money, but I think my experience in gaming where I had to save up to buy things and make sure I always had enough taught me just as much.
Not only that, but I realize that some of my money comes from donors. Thus, I want to make sure I honor the money that is given on my behalf. If you want to become a supporter of me financially, which is greatly appreciated, then you can do so here.
This also works in other areas of our life. Our country has a problem with obesity and most of us are eating not because we are hungry, but because we are bored. We also don’t want to wait, and why should we? We can get fast food which normally isn’t good. I think we all have experienced the event of sitting on a couch or chair watching something or playing a game and just snacking while there. We don’t move much, we exercise little, and what do we have as a result? Obesity.
Finally, what about sex? Who wants to actually have to wait until you’re married? People who went to school with my parents and get divorced are now living together before marriage. In their day in school, that was definitely the exception. Today, it is the norm.
We live in a world of one-night stands and a hook-up culture and why? Because why should we have to wait? It’s just sex. Not a big deal. Right? We say this in an age of single parents, unplanned pregnancies, STDs, and ultimately a miasma of meaningless hanging around us. The sexual revolution has been a disaster.
However, the option left is waiting and we don’t like that. Why have to wait? If you want something, get it now.
Maybe we should return to what I learned so long ago in Final Fantasy. It was hard to work and work and wait before I went into the dungeon in making sure all my characters had the best equipment and spells, but you know what? When I did that, we did much better than everyone else and were more prepared not just for that dungeon, but for every other later dungeon. Also, if I needed to grind again to buy better items, I did it again.
Patience is a virtue we don’t really have today, but we definitely need it. How many of our problems in our society could be dealt with better if we would just learn to wait? How much of what we go through would we be better prepared for if we just waited?
(And I affirm the virgin birth)