Fairview Baptist Tabernacle
Tuesday, September 19, 2017
Staying Connected
 Archived Pastor's Desk 2016.09.18
September 18 – September 24 
Scripture Passage: For thus saith the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel; “In returning and rest shall you be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength…” Isaiah 30:15  
Dear Friends,  
     I am good at several things. Not great, not outstanding, just good. The thing that I am worst at is doing nothing. Inactivity in my mind is equated with doing nothing, so I struggle with comparing inactivity to laziness. To be considered lazy would be one of the worst things you could say about me. In my family that equates with an unpardonable sin. So when I am away from the church, I find something to do. When I am home, I find something to do. When I am at the farm, I try to pack into two days what should take three days to complete. If I stop and get still, I now have a tendency to nod off to sleep. It embarrasses me to have Patty come home from work and find me asleep. There is always something that needs to be done, and somewhere I could go. It seems I work harder and accomplish less than I ever have before. Lately I have been reading a book entitled “Mondays With My Old Pastor,” by Jose’ Luis Navajo. I came across a story in that book that really touched my heart and it spoke directly to me. I want to share that story with you and pray it has the same impact on your life that it did on mine.  
     There once was a woodcutter that showed up a log mill. The pay was good, and the working conditions were too, so the woodcutter decided to be a good example. The first day he introduced himself to the foreman, who gave him an ax and assigned him to a certain spot in the forest. The man was excited and went out into the forest to work, and in one single day he cut down eighteen trees.  
“Congratulations,” the foreman told him. “Keep it up.” 
     Encouraged by the foreman’s words, the woodcutter decided to improve on his work the next day. So he went to bed early that night, and the next morning he got up very early, before anyone else, and went out into the forest. He worked very hard, but was only able to cut down fifteen trees. “I must be tired,” he said, so he decided to go to bed at sundown. When dawn came, he decided to beat the record of eighteen trees. However, that day he wasn’t able to even cut down half that number. The next day he only cut down seven, then five, and the last day he spent all afternoon trying to cut down his second tree. Worried about what his foreman would say, the woodcutter went to tell him what was happening and to promise that he was giving it his best. The foreman asked him: “When was the last time you sharpened your ax?”  
     “Sharpen my ax? I haven’t had time. I was too busy cutting down trees.”  
     The moral of this story is that when the ax gets dull, we will have to spend double the energy to obtain half the results. Sometimes the wisest thing we can do is to stop, interrupt the felling of trees, and sharpen the ax. Prayer, talking with God and having intimate communion with Him, is the way our axes get sharpened again.  
In Christ,
Pastor Johnny  
Original Spanish story from A. Cruz Beauregard, Capsulas Motivacionales (Editorial Diana, 1988)