Thursday, August 13, 2015

The Wedge

Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. You have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood in your striving against sin;  Hebrews 12:1-4 NASB
Isn’t it amazing how little things can get so big in our lives?  Something seemingly forgotten that is still actively affecting our behavior, mood, attitude or circumstances.  That “sin which so easily entangles us” seems to rooted deep within.  We find ourselves battling it on occasion and then it fades into the background and we believe it has ceased to do damage.  Maybe the following story will help us understand the danger of repressed sin.

"The story of the iron wedge began years ago when the white'-haired farmer was a lad on his father’s homestead. The sawmill had only recently been moved from the valley and the settlers were still finding tools and odd pieces of equipment scattered about...
"On this particular day, it was faller's wedge—wide, flat, and heavy a foot or more long, and splayed from mighty poundings. The path from the south pasture did not pass the wood shed; and, because he was already late for dinner, the lad laid the wedge between the limbs of the young walnut tree his father had planted near the front gate. He would take the wedge to the shed right after dinner, or some time when he was going that way.
"He truly meant to, but he never did. It was there between the limbs a little tight, when he attained his manhood. It was there, now firmly gripped, when he married and took over his father's farm. It was half grown over on the day the threshing crew ate dinner under the tree…
Grown in and healed over, the wedge was still in the tree the winter the ice storm came.
"In the chill silence of that wintry night, with the mist like rain sifting down and freezing where it fell, one of the three major limbs split away from the trunk and crashed to the ground. This so unbalanced the remainder of the top that it, too, split apart and went down. When the storm was over, not a twig of the once-proud tree remained.
"Early the next morning, the farmer went out to mourn his loss. `Wouldn’t have had that happen for a thousand dollars,' he said. `Prettiest tree in the valley, that was.'
"Then, his eyes caught sight of something in the splintered ruin. `The wedge,' he muttered reproachfully `The wedge I found in the south pasture.' A glance told him why the tree had fallen. Growing edge-up in the trunk, the wedge had prevented the limb fibers from knitting together as they should."
Forgotten wedges!  Hidden weaknesses grown over and invisible, waiting until some winter night to work their ruin.  What better symbolizes the presence and effect of unconfessed sin in our lives! 

Scripture to Claim:

Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity And cleanse me from my sin.  Psalms 51:2 NASB

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