Is Your Life a Struggle?

by Kevin on June 26, 2015

With absolute hopelessness, I looked upon my creation in abject disdain. How could so much work result in such struggle? And why would you laugh? Because it is funny…

Our ranch has a gate into the pens that must have been designed by someone using the metric system. No standard gate will fit. But like any cowboy worth his salt, I found a way to fix it.

I found an old wooden gate that Noah must have used at one time. It was a little longer than it probably should have been, but it would fit my need. The only problem was that most of the posts had been set in holes that might have measured ten inches deep. There was no way the end post would hold this massive wooden monstrosity.

That’s why I was going to use a telephone pole already in the ground one foot away.

The first obstacle was drilling two holes through a telephone pole without the use of a long drill bit. In my mind, I would use the longest bit I had and drill in from each side. I was good in math so this out to be easy.

One hour later, I have a sledgehammer in hand and I am screaming like the last wounded Viking surrounded by the enemy. The hole I drilled wasn’t level, plumb, or straight.

Nothing straightens out a mess like a sledgehammer…but this can create problems.

Tapping the gate hinge was not getting the job done so I resorted to full out lumberjack swings. These swings get the job done right if you hit your intended target. I swung a mighty blow, but missed. When your weight is braced for impact and it doesn’t come, then you are thrust forward and your face hits the target instead.

Did you know that no matter how many times you punch a sledgehammer, it never says I’m sorry?

With both hinges in place, bent to and fro into perfection, I then tackled trying hang this monstrosity alone. The gate would be one foot off of the ground, but it might as well been twelve feet for all the effort it took.

The bottom hinge only took forty-five minutes. It was the top hinge that was hard.

It would be too long to go into detail, but suffice it to say that it would have been easier to balance a box of rambunctious puppies on a fence post than to balance that gate on bricks, buckets, and a lead rope in order to get it just right. When the top hinge fell into place, I wept.

I sat down, having conquered the job, my mouth, and with only minimal blood loss. After catching my breath and admiring my handiwork, I got up to test my accomplishment.

To my horror, I had been so focused on the hinge side that I failed to notice the gravest of errors.

It was on the wrong side of the pole and swung the wrong way.

Life is often a struggle, but it is in this struggle, not the results, that we find out who we are and what we are made of.

Struggle does not mean that we are doing something wrong, often times it is because we are doing something right.

This is why we work hard and continue to struggle, for our hope is in the living God, who is the Savior of all people and particularly of all believers. -1 Timothy 4:10

Believers are strangers in a foreign land and this can be a struggle. We are a new creation and this will be a struggle. We are not to be conformed to the patterns of this world and this will be a struggle.

It is the struggles of our labor, not the outcome, that make us into who we are. Salmon that do not struggle against the river current never experience the fishermen’s lure, bears, falls, shallows, or fulfillment of purpose. Yet they die just the same, safe and sound, only unfulfilled.

weak never struggle

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