Tuesday, September 04, 2012
Today’s Topic: The Gift of the Grind
Today’s Text: Isaiah 64:8 (ESV) But now, O LORD, you are our Father; we are the clay, and you are our potter; we are all the work of your hand.
The morning light revealed our outlook on life. As we rose from bed we were presented with two emotional options: agonizing apprehension and anxiety, or enthusiastic eagerness and excitement. The choice we made is a real statement of our outlook on life.
How did the kids react to the first day of school? How did you react to sending them off, maybe for the first time? How did you choose to look at the first day back to work after a long holiday weekend?
For many, the defining statement of their attitude is this – “Back to the grind.” For others, it is “Back to the growth.” Life is either grinding us down to make us smaller or grinding us down to make us stronger. It all depends on how we choose to look at it.
My garage is a mess right now. Three weeks ago, while using my trailer to haul a bunch of equipment for our outdoor worship service on the site of our new building, the shackle on one of the leaf springs broke away from the frame. It was a combination of rust, a heavy load, and very rough ground. In the past two weeks I have been tearing the trailer apart, cutting away sections of the frame that need to be replaced, grinding down the parts that can be saved and reused, and preparing everything for re-assembly. The sparks have been flying along with the dust and rust. Tomorrow a friend will come over with his welder, and we will begin the repair. It has been quite the project, and I look forward to when it is done so I can put the cars back in their home again.
As I spent three hours yesterday cutting and grinding the metal pieces of the trailer, I realized how important it is to be ground. Some pieces had to be discarded because they had not been properly protected from the elements and were seriously weakened by the rust that resulted from their exposure. Other pieces could be salvaged and strengthened by grinding away the rust. During the grinding, some pieces were re-shaped to better connect to the new pieces that would be installed. The ultimate result after painting will be a much stronger and longer-lasting trailer that will endure exposure to the corrupting influences of nature.
There are sufficient obvious applications for each of us in this illustration, and the Holy Spirit will make them if you open your heart to His teaching. How you choose to apply those applications will determine your outlook on life when you wake up tomorrow. Will it be “Back to the grind,” or “Back to the growth?”