Sunday, March 20, 2011

PROBLEMS

LAWNMOWER MAN
Do you ever notice sometimes we make problems bigger than they have to be?  I think it is human nature or the way we are wired or something.  I have done it before and I am sure I will do it again.  When I do it, I always "catch myself" in that situation.  Case in point.  I like to think of myself as a "fix-it" kinda guy.  I have always had some degree of luck with lots of things I have tackled so I am usually willing to try about anything.  Recently, I was preparing my lawnmower for the spring season.  I brought the 42" cut riding mower into my workshop, pulled the cutting deck out from under the bottom of the mower and began to clean away some of last year's clippings.  I noticed the main drive belt from the motor to the transmission needed to be changed.  I have had the mower probably 10 years and I knew it had never been changed before.  After closer inspection, I could tell it was barely holding on.  So, I began to explore how to REMOVE the belt.  As usual, when you start trying to remove something like that, you can tell the engineers that designed the parts around this circumstance of "changing the belt" were not planning on changing the belt on their personal mower!  I once had a classic car and to change the oil pan gasket, you had to take the engine loose from the frame of the car.  Come to find out, the SAME was required on changing the belt on this mower!  (Could it have been the same engineer?)  I did get the belt off and my wife picked up a new one.  I was "away" from the project for a couple of weeks due to other obligations and then a bigger problem set in on getting the repair completed.

DOUBT
So, the Saturday comes when I have no other obligations but the basketball games at hand.  I have the morning to myself prior to the games I want to listen to and watch around the noon hour.  I have the new "Saturday morning tradition breakfast", review the paper and then THINK about getting started on putting that belt on.  But, it has been several weeks since I took off the bad belt.  Will I remember how I took the old one off?  Will the sun be in my eyes?  Will I remember where all of the parts go back on?  Will I have bolts/parts left over?  Of course, the bolts thing is never a good sign.  And you can see what has happen to me, I have let DOUBT find a place in my head and my heart.  How does doubt get into our heads?  I don't usually feel like I put it there but it gets there.  I think doubt is of the devil.  Seriously.  And, there is a fine line between doubt and self-confidence.  I don't know about you but DOUBT for me can be a brick wall that is 20 feet tall and 3 feet thick......if I LET IT BE.  Doubt can be the downfall of individuals, organizations or even a whole country.  Japan is experiencing one of the worst natural disasters I have ever seen in my lifetime.  Do you think that people in that country have had their confidence shaken?  I don't think there is any question they have.  But, there are people in that country and from all over the World that believe they can help the people of Japan get on the other side of the situation and circumstances caused by it.  Hopefully, this will help them overcome the doubt they are experiencing about their futures right now.

OVERCOMING DOUBT    
Our story about the belt continues.  Well, I did jump into the job of getting the belt changed.  The grass was getting high and really needed to be cut, I had no choice.  My son wanted me to come to Bowling Green and play golf.  It would have been a great day for that and it would have been lots of fun.  It was also an excuse for me to not have to tackle fixing the mower.  But, I buckled down.  I tacked the job.  I was victorious over the obstacle and I overcame the doubt I had created in my mind about being able to get the job done.  I remembered where every part went.  I remembered how the belt went back on the mower.  I didn't have any parts left over, although I thought I was going to have two nuts!!!  But I persisted.  I thought, I looked closely at the situation, I examined.  I didn't get in a hurry, I thought the situation through, I found where the two nuts went and then I re-examined the entire job to make sure something was not going to come flying off to injure myself or someone else.  And, when the job was finished, I mowed the yard.  I still got to listen to and watch the ballgames, but I did not get to play golf.  Next week for the golf.  With the lawnmower fixed and the yard cut.  And you know, I will probably feel better about my drives, my shots in the fairway and my putting as a result of fixing the mower.  I will probably have more confidence in my shots because I overcame doubt.

DON'T GIVE DOUBT A HOME
If we are not careful, doubt can take up residence in our minds, in our hearts and in our lives.  Our hearts and minds is not a place where we should give doubt a place to reside.  And, probably the reason we let doubt have such a prominent place is because there is room in our head and heart for doubts' occupancy. Romans 8:28  says, "all things work together for good for them that love the Lord and are called according to His purpose".  I want to be a God-purpose person in my life everyday.  I want to please God and I know He is with me if I let Him be there.  If you and I would give God the place He deserves in our heads and our hearts there will be less room for doubt in our lives about everything.  If I make God more of who you are through your character and your choices and there will be less doubting and more doing.

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