Thursday, December 07, 2006

Clean Stables ... or Fruitful Fields?

Where there are no oxen, the manger is clean,
but abundant crops come by the strength of the ox.
Proverbs 14:4 (ESV)

God has used this verse to challenge me this week. When oxen are working a field, the farmer comes in to the manger or stable and refreshes the hay, cleans out the biggest mess ... but both the farmer and the oxen are too worn out to care about the aesthetics of the manger area. The goal is fruitfulness! On the other hand, if crops fail to make and a farmer sells his oxen, he finds himself with ample time to scrub the manger walls!

The question I sense God asking me this week through this verse is this: What is a "clean stable" in my life, that I am prioritizing rather than the effort that leads to fruitfulness? What am I doing just to cross off my list, when God would prefer I focus on kingdom-building tasks? Am I willing to sacrifice the "clean stable" for fruitful fields?

What about you? In your kingdom work, it is easy to get frustrated by the things you don't get done ... you feel disorganized and out of sorts much of the time. Certainly sometimes God calls us to prioritize planning and organization - but is it possible that part of your frustration comes from wanting a "clean stable" ... while God is asking you to focus on the fruitful field that is coming?

May God bless you with His perspective today.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

To clean or not to clean--that is
the question. Like you so ably
pointed out, often He & we are better served with a little mess.