The Unfinished Furrow

I recently noted in a previous devotional that I have been trying to reorganize my Preaching File. In that endeavor, I have discovered another note to myself. It spoke to me, again. I am pleased to share it with you.

Luke records an intriguing statement from the lips of Jesus:  “And Jesus said unto him, ‘No man, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back is fit for the Kingdom of God.’” (Luke 9:62)

We are fascinated by unfinished stories whose close is not well marked. Charles Dickens left an unfinished novel. We have Schubert’s Unfinished Symphony. Many of us listened intently to Paul Harvey’s ‘The Rest of the Story.’

The Gospels abound in unfinished stories. Many people flash across the page, then disappear. They leave us wondering what happened next. For example, did the traveller to Jericho and the Good Samaritan maintain a friendship formed on the road that day?  Or, did the older son in the parable of the Prodigal Son ever reconcile with his younger brother? Jesus simply indicated in these stories the RIGHT PATH and left it there. My job as a disciple of Jesus is to get on the right path and stay there. No turning back. No looking back.

 Keep me from turning back!
My hand is on the plow, my faltering hand.
But all in front of me is untilled land,
The wilderness and the solitary place,
The lonely desert with its interspace
The handles of my plow with tears are wet.
The shares with rust are spoiled and yet,
My God! My God! Keep me from turning back.

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A Gem Worth Remembering

I recently had some down time so I attempted a reorganization of my Preaching File Case. I carry it with me when on the road, and it tends to get a little disorganized.  The side pockets were filled with scraps of paper containing tidbits I thought at the time were worth saving.  Some of them were gems, but I also wondered why I had saved some of the others.  One such ‘gem’ is included here. I hope it is as meaningful to you as it has been to me.

 I was regretting the past
And fearing the future.
Suddenly my Lord was speaking:
“My name is I AM”

He paused. I waited. He continued,
When you live in the past
With its mistakes and regrets,
It is hard. I am not there.
My name is not I WAS.

“When you live in the future,
With its problems and fears,
It is hard. I am not there.
My name is not I WILL BE.

“When you live in this moment,
It is not hard. I am here.
My name is I AM.”

~ Helen Mallicoat

A prayer for today:  Today, Lord, let me live in this moment. I am content to know that your name is I AM. This thought helps me to neither regret the past nor fear the future.

~ Brother Roy