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A Dull Ax

By Greg Perkins, SMDHealthy.Church
The Old Testament is FULL of great life lessons for us, and one of these is found in the book of Ecclesiastes.

Ecclesiastes 10:10 says:

10 If the ax is dull and its edge unsharpened, more strength is needed, but skill will bring success.

The first time I read this, I kept on reading without taking any particular notice.  However, after subsequent readings, this verse nearly jumped off the page.  Growing up as a teenager in Wisconsin, our family cut a lot of wood to burn as our primary source of heat.  Most of the time, we used a chainsaw, but, occasionally, we would use an ax for smaller trees or branches, which is why this verse captured my attention.

If you try to cut down a tree with a dull ax, you will eventually achieve your goal—but it will take more strength than necessary.  If the ax is sharpened, however, it would be more efficient.  The lesson is found in the last few words of the verse – “but skill will bring success.”  Basically, the verse is telling us that you can accomplish the task if it is dull, but if you are skilled (wise, trained, or experienced), you will keep the ax sharp to be as productive as possible.

So, what is the spiritual application for us?  As Christ followers AND ministers of the Gospel, we are essentially an instrument or tool in the hand of the Master Builder (Christ).  The daily demands and challenges of life eventually wear on us and cause us to lose our edge, but too often we just keep hacking away without realizing that it requires much more effort than before.  We get the job done, but we are exhausted.

 

 

The wise and experienced woodsman knows that he is only as good as his tools allow him to be.  Regardless of the demands upon him, he takes great care to ensure that his tools are clean and sharp so he can be as effective as possible.

As church leaders, we cannot ignore the importance of remaining “sharp” in our walk with the Lord.  Our work FOR Him, should never become more important than our relationship WITH Him!  We must take time in the midst of our busy schedules and hectic pace, to study His Word and spend time in His presence to allow Him to sharpen and refresh us.  This is the ONLY way to remain effective for the Lord.

Stay sharp, and may God bless you in all you are doing for the Kingdom!

 

The wise and experienced woodsman knows that he is only as good as his tools allow him to be.  Regardless of the demands upon him, he takes great care to ensure that his tools are clean and sharp so he can be as effective as possible.

GREG PERKINS

DIRECTOR, SMD HEALTHY CHURCH

Greg Perkins

Greg Perkins

Church Development Director

Greg Perkins serves as Church Development Director for the Southern Missouri District. He and his wife Di Ann have always had a passion for the local church as well as a deep desire to see healthy, vibrant churches reach their communities with the Gospel.  They bring this passion and desire to their work in and among the churches of Southern Missouri.  The Perkins’ are former lead pastors of First Family Church in Osage Beach, MO, and have spent over 25 years in full-time church ministry in Southern Missouri and Kansas, serving as lead pastor in Marshfield, Missouri and Derby, Kansas.  Di Ann has worked as an executive secretary in real estate, banking, international missions, and Christian higher education. In addition to church leadership, Greg spent 6 years as a Senior Sales and Business Development Representative for two Fortune 500 companies, as well as Director of Chaplains for police agencies in Kansas and Missouri. The Perkins’ have two sons, Brad and Alex. Greg is also the author of a devotional book entitled, “Moments of Destiny,” He is currently working on a series of book projects and also has a devotional blog site, www.momentsofdestiny.com.

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