top of page

Lessons from the Aerial: Get the Right Tools

Our 10-year-old, Olivia, recently took up a new activity: Aerial. Or as I like to call it, the 3rd leading cause of Dad Anxiety sweeping the nation. 


That's both a made up statistic and an overstatement, but watching your daughter perform gravity-defying climbs and drops on an aerial silk does require a certain level of trust and ability to calm one's nerves. Suffice it to say I have a more active prayer life. 


When she recently bought her first aerial silk, she was so eager to get it hung that I found myself on top of a step ladder which was on top of a picnic table on a cold, windy April day in an attempt to hang it up.

With hands becoming numb, I tried to loosen an old bolt from our swing so that I could replace it with the aerial contraption. All I had brought to work with at the moment was a small pair of needle-nose pliers and a flat head screwdriver. 


I was getting nowhere.  I eventually gave up because we had to head somewhere and I'd run out of time. 


My daughter mustered all the patience a 10-year-old can as we walked away, unsuccessful.


A few days later when we were back home and I was able to procure the proper-sized wrench, I climbed back up and loosened the bolt in seconds. 


Immediately, I was struck and said, “Wow, what a difference having the right tool makes!” 


In the weeks since then, there have been several moments where a similar scenario occurred (probably because we're in the middle of moving and so we're building and tearing down a lot of items) and I have found myself reflecting on how much time and frustration it saves when we approach a situation with the proper tools. 


You might have caught where I'm going with this. 


This principle applies not only to hands-on projects, but to life and relationships too. 


How many times are we stuck in patterns where we feel like we are banging our heads against the proverbial wall? It's not because we're ignorant or mean-spirited or “less than.” 


And guess what - they're not either. The other person is also trying their best with what they've got too. 


We just might be approaching the situation without the proper tools. 


What situation in your life is causing you stress or frustration because you feel like you're blocked, up against a wall, or stuck in a pattern that's not working for you?


Properly equip yourself and you will be amazed at what it feels like to skip the aimless wandering or wheel-spinning and get straight to solutions.

  1. Own your situation. Did you catch my language at the beginning…where I said I “found myself” on a ladder on top of a table. More accurately, I “put myself" there. On a cold day. Without the right tools. I needed to recognize my situation and prepare myself adequately.

  2. Resource yourself. You are powerful. Explore and identify tools that are made to fit your situation. They are out there. There is a supply for every demand.

  3. Enlist people to help. You are connected. Remember that with strong relationships with God and others you are never left without a way to meet your needs and challenges. Stop repeating cycles alone and find a guide, friend, or mentor to help speak into your situation.


32 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page