April McGowan

Chipping Away

Tall TreesWhile growing up I thought once I was in my forties (or old, as I considered it) that I’d have life all figured out. Okay, quit chuckling at me, that’s not nice. Anyway… as I was saying…life all figured out. Easy sailing on smooth seas. (Seriously?…Stop laughing!)

God’s word doesn’t promise smooth sailing, through. It does promise He will never leave us nor forsake us. I’ve begun to wonder if that verse has a double meaning. In His not leaving us, He’s also not leaving us to our own devices, or leaving us unchanged. Rather, once we accept Jesus as our savior, we are being made over.

We’re like trees standing in a grove, growing, waiting, watching the seasons pass, one to the next. The summer, the fall, the winter… But rather suddenlyfile2911254930140 and often without warning, trials come. We are cut down. Our limbs trimmed with each challenge, each hardship, each prayer for mercy until our bark is stripped and we are laid bare and tossed away seemingly forgotten in a stack. It’s tempting to despair in that wood pile. There seems no point. If we are walking alone in our faith, it can be devastating. But never fear, the Father is busy not leaving us to our own. He’s making us over, chipping away at us, for our own good and His ultimate Glory, making us into something useful. We have to be careful though, because the temptation to focus on the shavings pooling around our feet instead of the Master Carpenter is great.

Some of us (me included) will race to the store for wood glue and desperately try to stick those useless shavings back on, or put them in a box to save for later. In our memories, those shavings can become so important we forget that the Lord isn’t interested in them, but He’s got a better plan in mind. It’s not until we brush the shavings off and step away, looking at ourselves through His eyes we are able to see a new, useful creation. The old has been chipped away.

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Are you stuck in winter? Are you being chipped away at? Do not fear, nor despair–spring is coming. It’s nearly here.

2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

 

 

5 Comments

  1. Janet
    Mar 4, 2015

    Beautiful!

  2. Bonnie Leon
    Mar 11, 2015

    Amen, April. I love spring!

  3. Linda Chapman
    Mar 6, 2016

    Gosh. Just love this and I go back to it a lot. I think it brought me hope at a time when I was so hopeless.

    • April
      Mar 6, 2016

      Funny, when I write things kits because I feel like God has been teaching me something through all this illness and surrender. And oftentimes I’ll revisit to help me remember his faithfulness during a new hard patch. I’m glad that something I’ve shared can do that for another person, too. Hugs, Linda.

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