Lauren and Mikaela--identical twins living on opposite coasts--blog about the story of life and their adventures in faith.

5.28.2013

Sawdust

Lauren and I were six and needed cold, hard cash. Since McDonald's wasn't hiring, we went to Papa, and he offered to pay us for vacuuming out the two family cars. In my six year-old mind, this was a large job (just like changing my bedsheets took 2 hours and then two weeks to recover), but the payment was generous, and so we accepted. My mind was already working through the pros and cons of each car, and somehow, I managed to work it out with Lauren so that I got the smaller of the two vehicles.

Very pleased with myself, I vacuumed the front and the middle in no time at all. Then I opened up the back door, only to be confronted by sawdust scattered across the carpet. I vacuumed. Then I vacuumed again. Then I vacuumed some more. Imagine trying to separate a Velcro fastener with suction power--that's how I felt as the sawdust stubbornly clung to the fuzzy carpet. Finally, I had to go get Papa to help me with the impossible job. I still remember both of us standing there, looking at the back of the van as he said, "I knew this van would be a tougher job, but I wanted to just wait and see who would pick it."

That gentle rebuke remains in my mind long after the memory of just how we managed to separate the sawdust from the upholstery, or how much I got paid, or what I spent my money on.

I remember this lesson when I selfishly want to choose the easy or more desirable thing and leave someone else the lesser.


Two Paths

 
 
Most importantly, however, I've come to equate those two vehicles with the choices we all have. There is always a soft path winding through a lush green park. Or there is the rocky, treacherous path scaling a mountain. When my mind is made up, God always lets me choose. But no sooner do I choose the easy path, then do I run into a huge pile of sawdust. God gently points me back to the rocky path; He knew all along which was the better path for me, but did I ask? Did I listen? Did I care? I asked my flesh--I listened to my emotions--I cared only about the temporal. So I repent, humble myself, find the rocky path, and hike it with joy!
 

The good that God works for in our lives is conformity to the likeness of His Son. It is not necessarily comfort or happiness but conformity to Christ in ever-increasing measure in this life and in its fullness in eternity [1].

 
Our Abba Father already knows what is best--why would we want to choose what looks easiest? The pleasures soon crumble into sawdust, and the mess we are left to clean is a painstaking process. Die to yourself today and choose to risk ridicule, or serve others, or make the hard choice. The view at the top of the mountain is amazing--and the hidden rewards of God's good for our lives bring satisfaction indeed.

 
Photo Credit: sunflower_gal
[1] Bridges, Jerry. Trusting God. Colorado Springs, CO: NavPress, 1988. p. 120. Print.

6 comments:

  1. Indeed they always do. :) Great post, Mikaela!

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  2. Amen!! You guys post so much wisdom and truth! Thank you.
    ~Mekenna

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    1. This was a lesson learned thanks to the wisdom and truth of my earthly father and my Heavenly Father, so I sure can't take much credit for it. ;-)

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  3. Thank you again for your encouragement! It once again was just what I needed to hear today! I wish I had such an amazing talent for writing!

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    1. I'm so glad I'm not the only one who needed to ponder this! ;-) Thank you very much--you're so sweet!

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