I knew a man who wanted to leave his two boys something to remember him by, years after he was gone. So when the boys were older teenagers he bought them both very expensive handguns. Both guns had their own fancy cases,both of the guns were chrome- plated with scroll work along the sides. Neither of the boys had done any hunting or shooting in years, but I knew what this father really wanted.
This man said that the boys appreciated the gift, but did not seem all that thrilled about it. He ask me why that was. I told him it was because no part of his life was “living through” those guns. “Nothing in those new guns reminded them of you,” I said.
I told him about a man I knew in Texas who had lost his father. The Texas man and I were just beginning to talk about things he remembered about his dad. He stopped abruptly in mid-conversation and said, “Let me show you, instead of just tell you.”
We go into the garage and there hanging on the wall was an old hand-saw, something from the 50’s. It had a broken handle, kerf- poor from wear, dull as a lying politician, and all taped back together.
He said, “This is what he left me.” At first I assumed he meant that statement as a slight against his dad for leaving him so little. As I looked into his eyes I realized he meant something totally different. He began to cry. And as all men know, when one man is crying ,other men do not look him in the face, or be too quick to comfort. We stood silent for a while.
He said, “Put it in your hand.” I did so with reluctance, realizing I was on holy ground. “What do you notice?” He said. “Well, I realize this thing is deeply embedded with someone else’s hand.” He said, “Yea, but it fits my hand perfectly! It was meant to be; it fits my hand perfectly! ”
He continued to tell how his dad was a carpenter. How the sound of that saw working, in his father’s hand, strengthened him just to hear it in action. How that sometimes, after his father had passed, when no one else was around, he would put his hand into that saw and cut a piece of wood, just to remind Him of his dad.
I said, “This is not really about a saw at all, is it?” He said, “No, not really, it is just a symbol of all the encouragement and grit my father transferred to me even if I did not know what he was doing, or how he did it. My dad knew, the whole time, I mean the whole time, he knew what he was doing! He used this thing to example to me many things about life. He wore himself out in life just for me. He gave and never ask me to give back to him, but rather to give to others. My dad knew what he was doing.”
That last statement stuck with me. “My dad knew what he was doing.” Your Father knows what he is doing. Even when you are not doing so well in your walk, still things are being caught by you, from your Father; because He knows what He is doing in your life. Philippians 1:6
If we want to know God’s will for us this year it will take us becoming like our Father. Spending time with our Father. That means spending time in the Word. Learning what His heart is like, instead of always seeking our own misguided, short-sighted attempts to find happiness apart from the Father. We have to trust His heart for our good, and not our own heart for our good. He is asking us to walk where Jesus walked, in our daily experience. Our hands were made to fit into His hands.
ROMANS 8:14-16 ” For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God. For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, ‘Abba, Father!’ The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God.”
ROMANS 15:1-6 ” Now we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength and not just please ourselves. Each of us is to please his neighbor for his good, to his edification. For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written,’ THE REPROACHES OF THOSE WHO REPROACHED YOU, FELL ON ME.’ For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the scriptures we might have hope. Now may the God who gives perseverance and encouragement grant you to be of the same mind with one another according to Christ Jesus, so that with one accord you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” JWP