Skip to main content

How sharp are you?

A dull ax requires great strength; be wise and sharpen the blade. (Ecclesiastes 10:10 TLB)

I am a stickler about using a good sharp knife when I am prepping meals. I don't like to 'hack thru' food items, but prefer that very clean, swift cut while prepping. The desire for a sharp knife means I have to frequently sharpen the blade to keep the 'edge' in the condition I like. In so doing, I actually shorten the length of time it takes to prep. I have had some knives that just don't hold their edge, no matter how much effort I put into sharpening them. Those knives don't get used much in my house, simply because they increase effort! The same attention should be paid to remaining 'sharp' when it comes to my mind, emotions, and spiritual condition!

Just as with the care and treatment of my knives, there needs to be special effort put into maintaining a 'sharp edge' in our spiritual lives. If you find your 'sharpening' has increased in frequency you might ask if the 'edge' being sharpened is really 'taking the sharpening'! As with some of those softer blade knives that don't hold the edge I attempt to put on them, our spiritual lives can get a little 'soft' at times. We might spend a lot more effort trying to 'maintain the edge', but the 'material' we are sharpening isn't going to 'hold it'. 

If you consider what makes a knife durable and dependable, able to maintain the edge, most knife craftsmen will tell you it is a combination of hardness, toughness, the ability to hold up to wear or resistance, and what some call a "corrosion factor". If we take these same components and consider them in light of our spiritual lives, then it might translate something like this:

Hardness - are we engaging in the things that will help us avoid any "deformity" in our character when things like stress and external forces are applied to our daily tasks? If we want to avoid developing weak points on our 'edge' spiritually, we need to be sure we are adding things into the fabric of our lives that actually increase our strength to resist stress and external factors that oppose us, not ignoring them!

Toughness - similar to hardness, but a knife craftsman will tell you the toughness of the blade is the ability to not develop little pits, cracks, and chips along the edge of that blade. Where does the cutting really happen - on the edge. What do cracks, nicks, and chips do when found on the blade's edge - they snag up and make a mess. A chip in a knife's edge makes for much work to rectify it - creating undo friction, stress, and work!

Wear and Corrosion - the knife craftsman will tell you this is the ability to withstand damage - not really to avoid it. Abrasion happens when you cut with a blade. The wear-ability of the blade is in direct correlation to how well it can withstand that abrasiveness. Along that same line, as cuts are made with a blade, things are 'attracted' to the blade - the process of adherence. Corrosion happens when too much 'adherence' occurs, increasing friction, wearing the blade, and eventually dulling it significantly. There is much we can do to avoid both wear and corrosion in our spiritual lives, but both require attention to detail. Both of these factors are dependent upon the make up of the steel - what goes into the steel determines how the steal will withstand damage! Just sayin!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

What did obedience cost Mary and Joseph?

As we have looked at the birth of Christ, we have considered the fact he was born of a virgin, with an earthly father so willing to honor God with his life that he married a woman who was already pregnant.  In that day and time, a very taboo thing.  We also saw how the mother of Christ was chosen by God and given the dramatic news that she would carry the Son of God.  Imagine her awe, but also see her tremendous amount of fear as she would have received this announcement, knowing all she knew about the time in which she lived about how a woman out of wedlock showing up pregnant would be treated.  We also explored the lowly birth of Jesus in a stable of sorts, surrounded by animals, visited by shepherds, and then honored by magi from afar.  The announcement of his birth was by angels - start to finish.  Mary heard from an angel (a messenger from God), while Joseph was set at ease by a messenger from God on another occasion - assuring him the thing he was about to do in marrying Mary wa

A brilliant display indeed

Love from the center of who you are ; don’t fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply ; practice playing second fiddle. Don’t burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don’t quit in hard times; pray all the harder. (Romans 12:9-12) Integrity and Intensity don't seem to fit together all that well, but they are uniquely interwoven traits which actually complement each other. "Love from the center of who you are; don't fake it." God asks for us to have some intensity (fervor) in how we love (from the center of who we are), but he also expects us to have integrity in our love as he asks us to be real in our love (don't fake it). They are indeed integral to each other. At first, we may only think of integrity as honesty - some adherence to a moral code within. I believe there is a little more to integrity than meets the eye. In the most literal sense,

The bobby pin in the electrical socket does what???

Avoidance is the act of staying away from something - usually because it brings some kind of negative effect into your life.  For example, if you are a diabetic, you avoid the intake of high quantities of simple sugars because they bring the negative effect of elevating your blood glucose to unhealthy levels.  If you were like me as a kid, listening to mom and dad tell you the electrical outlets were actually dangerous didn't matter all that much until you put the bobby pin into the tiny slots and felt that jolt of electric current course through your body! At that point, you recognized electricity as having a "dangerous" side to it - it produces negative effects when embraced in a wrong manner.  Both of these are good things, when used correctly.  Sugar has a benefit of producing energy within our cells, but an over-abundance of it will have a bad effect.  Electricity lights our path and keeps us warm on cold nights, but not contained as it should be and it can produce