Quay County Sun - Serving the High Plains

Obstacles on the path to heaven must be removed


February 10, 2015

Religion Columnist

“… I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content”. Philippians 4:11

A man was given a beautiful cabin on a lake in the mountains. Heading up the only road, he encountered a huge tree fallen in the road. Examining the situation he soon determined there was no way to go around the obstacle. He sat down and started considering his options.

He could turn around and go back but he had sold everything except what was in his vehicle. His past behind and his future ahead, the idea seemed ridiculous because there was nothing to go back to.

There was always the option of giving up and living somewhere, but it wouldn’t be the same. However the tree was such a big obstacle, and he wasn’t sure he had the time or the strength to tackle it.

The cabin was at the end of the road and was everything he ever wanted in life. Still he had to deal with that dead tree in the road when an idea hit him. He had all the tools he needed with him and all he had to do was cut the tree in smaller pieces. It would take care of the tree and he would have plenty of firewood for the winter.

As he swung the axe for a while, he realized how valuable the firewood was and people would pay good money for it. He thought and thought and came up with a plan. There were plenty of fallen trees and he could go back and hire a crew to cut the wood. With the money he made he would hire more men and start searching for more wood to cut.

Of course this plan would delay his trip to the cabin, but just think of all the money he could make and how impressed he would make his friends. Even people he didn’t know would comment about how he was great and successful.

He shrugged and put aside the thought as he realized he had all the money and supplies he would need. He wouldn’t live a very elaborate life, but he would have all he needed to live a comfortable life.

Although it took several days to cut up the tree, he took breaks to go down the hill to a stream and fish every day. Although he had to sleep in his vehicle, he cherished the time he had to take time to read his Bible and pray as he drank cool water from the nearby spring. Now despite all the delays, he loaded up the cut firewood and made his way to his dream cabin.

For several days, everywhere I turned I was faced with a message to learn contentment in my situation. It came in the form of a Bible study that is teaching us how to simplify our lives and fill our buckets so we can serve God.

A friend and I had a discussion about someone we both know. No matter how much money they have, they are always looking for ways to make more. While we talk about church and our Bible studies, they are bragging about their latest acquisition.

Finally I saw a movie about a man that thought more about his business than his young daughter. He was constantly breaking his promises to her because the business needed him. It took the gentle talking of an older woman to remind him that his family was more important than his work.

When the idea for the story suddenly came to me, I realized the Lord was trying to send me a message. While I am usually content where I am at, I sometimes lose sight of that cabin by the lake. When we face roadblocks, it is important to work to move it without becoming distracted or overwhelmed with our ultimate goal.

We will all get to where we are going when we listen to God.

Debra Whittington is a longtime resident of Tucumcari. Contact her at: [email protected]


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