The Lord reminded me of something incredible through a nine-year-old today. The message was clear: No matter how obscure our accomplishments and no matter how implausible our dreams—God can and will find a way to honor faith and hard work.
You may have heard the story of Los Angeles, California’s Caine Monroy. If not, you can and should read it here: Caine’s Arcade: 9-Year-Old boy Builds His Own Cardboard Arcade. Caine is an extraordinary little boy. Last summer, he conceived and built an elaborate arcade made of cardboard boxes. His father permitted him to construct and display his ambitious creation in the family’s auto parts shop. For weeks thereafter, Caine faithfully sat and waited for one of his Dad’s customers to play the games available in his remarkably sophisticated arcade. He even solicited their interest. No bites.
Eventually, Caine returned to school and still hadn’t secured any customers. The little entrepreneur’s classmates laughed when the boy said he’d built an arcade, so he dropped the subject. Even after the resolute businessman had become the laughingstock of the neighborhood, however, he continued to appear at his small business week in and week out awaiting the inevitable arrival of that first customer. By now, you’ve probably figured out where this story is headed. Caine’s story is, after all, a fairytale come true.
Little Mr. Monroy was pleasantly surprised one day when one of his Dad’s customers, an independent filmmaker by the name of Nirvan Mullick, not only asked about the arcade but stopped to play the games. Impressed by Caine’s fortitude and creativity, Mullick later organized a flash mob party via the Internet to celebrate the boy’s accomplishments. Last fall—as a result of the filmmaker’s intervention—an enthusiastic crowd gathered in front of the Monroys’ shop to play the games in Caine’s arcade. But, that’s not the end of the story. Mullick’s YouTube video subsequently went viral; and, in its aftermath, an online college fund was set up for Caine’s education here: Caine’sArcade.com. When I checked the bottom right-hand corner of the Caine’s Arcade website a moment ago, the collections stood at a staggering $72,565.86 and climbing.
Perhaps you’re thinking right now that Caine’s story has nothing to do with your life. If you are a true, blood-bought Christian, however, I beg to differ. There’s a lesson in this little boy’s story for all Christians, and it resonated with me as I watched his video through joyous, incredulous tears. Jesus said, “If ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you” (Matthew 17:20 KJV).
I don’t know if Caine has met or believes in Jesus Christ. I don’t know if his parents take him to church or have exposed him to the teachings of the Bible. But, I do know this. Caine is a child of faith. How do I know? I know, because he backed up his faith with his works. Perhaps Caine’s faith lies solely in his own ability to accomplish whatever he’s set out to accomplish. But, Jesus said in Mark 10:14-16, “14 … Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God.15 Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein. 16 And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them.” I want to be blessed by Jesus, don’t you? So, let’s pray a prayer together today: Lord, give me the faith of a nine-year-old.