Eli and Bobby had been playing tennis for about an hour when they decided to “take five” on the bench. Eli reached for his water bottle at this feet, when he spotted a very shiny object laying on the ground. He picked it up and examined it.
It was sort of a cross with a flattened area on top and a key at the bottom. The flat area clearly revealed a bold engraving “SUCCESS”. He handed it to Bobby and said; “What do you make of this?”
Bobby came back with; “Well, if you believe what it suggests, good luck with that. Nothin’ comes that easy.”
Eli just slipped it into his pocket with no comment, and bounced back onto the court…. suggesting; “Let’s finish this disaster…. I’ll loan you the key if you need it!”
Later, at home, Eli got on the computer to try to check out the origin of the key…. nothing; except a number of quotes and sayings that were pretty much self help related. One impressed him greatly. however. It said : “Success is not final, failure is not final. It is the courage to continue that counts.”
He asked himself; “Then why the key?………It’s got to open something.”
And so it went as Eli progressed in his life of inquiry and study…. actually for five years. The key had gone from a home in his pocket, to a chain around his neck. It had become a constant topic for conversation as people would inquire; “What’s with the necklace?”
He felt, at times, that he needed to print a brochure or something to hand out when the subject came up. And, it always seemed to,
Something, however, told him to always take this “custody” he had undertaken, seriously.
In the meantime he had continued in a steady progression to his goal to become an Engineer…. More than that; to study at Mass. Institute of Technology.
While he had not totally forgotten about the key, He continued his search to find it’s partner.. and to somehow magically meet his (and his parents) dream-destination. To do that, he knew that he would have to find the lock.
In the course of things, the day finally came the day that he had dreamed about. He was waiting for the notice of his acceptance into one of three schools that he had applied for.
It came………On Saturday. And YESSSSSSS!
There it was, the invitation to MIT….. but wait! Not only that, it was a full scholarship offered by the School of Research and Innovation.
Eli let out a yell that drew neighbors into the streets; some, I think, even in their underwear !
He grabbed the necklace, and with another more reverent recognition; “You did it ! Oh Golden One!
While it might have been easy to end it there; mission accomplished, we would have missed the whole point; the real destination.
Eli spent the next four years of his life in developing a Robotic that would perform surgery on afflicted children’s brains, that could lead to permanent restoration and recovery. And, it worked on seventeen patients so far!
The final touch was; that the very key around his neck was to be the sole instrument to unlock the Robot’s function……But, he also BUILT THE LOCK ! He had understood the message in it all.
It became his first God-Given legacy.
And, the key is now kept for those destined to use it, in a glass container, inscribed as he remembered from day one;
“SUCCESS IS NOT FINAL”
He went onward to the next challenge with great courage, and Spirit filled.