October 19th – Devotional Thought

“This Old Girl”

There are many things that show the shift in societal attitudes and practice.  Compared to the ‘old days’ marriages don’t last as often, a family may live in many houses, instead of a career with one company, careers consist of many companies and many jobs, people may belong to many different churches or none at all.  You can look at quite a few things and see that this clearly isn’t the past.

There may be some good in that, but also bad.  It does bring up an interesting question…What is it that we are attached to for life?

My Father-in-law was a farmer from the past.  He never bought land.  He lived in the same house for 60 plus years.  He stayed married and raised his family.  He hardly ever missed a Sunday at church or an opportunity to help when it arrived.  His focus on keeping the things that he loved the same and near could be seen in his B model John Deere tractor.

During the shortage days of WWII his father had ordered the ‘old girl’ as Ed lovingly called his green friend.  That she showed up at all was a miracle of sorts given the rationing that was going on and the refocusing of industrial might on building the United States war machine.   For nearly every day of his teenage years up through his retirement that tractor would spark to life in the morning and go off with Ed on his chores.  Her roles were many on the farm.  She gave help and required it.  If she sounded a little off, Ed was quick to figure out what was wrong and get her running right again.  Other machinery came and went, but the ‘B’ always stayed.  One of Ed’s proudest moments was when a much larger tractor got stuck in a wet field.  Ed took his ‘old girl’ with several lengths of chain, hooked up to the monster tractor and she had just enough in her to assist the much bigger tractor in climbing out.  Someone took a picture of the sturdy little ‘B’ towing its much bigger and newer cousin and that picture was displayed in Ed’s room for the rest of his life.

That old tractor sits in our machine shed now, a running keepsake from the previous generations of family.

In a society where better is often defined as bigger, newer, prettier, it’s nice to think about the old things that lovingly keep running in our lives.  These may be machines, but more importantly they are the things that we want to keep close; our spouse, family, church and faith.   Find the things and people in your life that don’t change, for they are a great blessing!

No matter how many things and people you find to hold onto for life, there is only one we hang on to who is life.  He is the one who holds on to us and keeps us running right even when we don’t sound very good, have trouble starting, or just plain fall apart.  He never finds something better, newer or prettier than you.  Hang on to the important things and remember that is exactly what your God does to you.

“Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you.  I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you.”  [Isaiah 46:4]

“I am the resurrection and the life.  He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.  Do you believe this?”  [John 11:25-26]

 

See you in church!

Pastor Phillips

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