Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Identifying the problem

I like to think of myself as a problem solver.  Hopefully, I'm better at problem solving than I am at blogging.  Then again, I don't think of myself as a blogger.  The 2 months since the last post would rid me of that.  For me, I blog when one of life's lessons jumps out at me from the circumstances of life.  Today's problem solving reminded me that our first place to look for a problem isn't always the place where the problem lies.

Today's problem? A sharp pain in my toe.  I walked in to check on our baby chicks this morning, and leaned over to check on the temperature in the incubator, when I felt a sharp pain in my toe.  It felt like I had stepped on something sharp, so I got down on my knees and felt around on the ground.  Just a few days ago, I had been tweaking the design of my incubator, which involved cutting some hardware cloth.  I thought I had picked up all the little pieces of wire, but the sharp pain in my toe told me otherwise.  I scoured the ground, looking with my eyes, feeling with my hands, but all I could come up with was a few small pieces of chick food that had fallen on the floor.  Oh well, I thought, I'll find it later.

About 30 minutes later, I was downstairs at the computer, and as I stood up, I felt the same sharp pain in the same toe.  My first reaction was to glance at the ground, but before I even focussed on the ground, I realized that it was the same toe, and the same place on the toe the pain was coming from.  I sat back down, picked up my foot, and saw the 1/4 inch sliver sitting in my toe.  Problem now solved.

As I thought about it, it occurred to me that we often look the wrong place for the solution.  "All of my friends are selfish and inconsiderate, I must need new friends!"  Of course, maybe we are selfish and inconsiderate, and it bothers us because we have the problem.  "People only come to me when they have a problem, or they want something," or maybe we are the ones who have been keeping score in friendships rather than being true friends.  "All of my bosses at work have been overbearing idiots!"  Or, maybe we don't have a submissive spirit necessary to make an employer/employee relationship work properly.

How many times do we walk around with a sliver in our toe, blaming the pain on everything that we walk on?  How often do we blame others when the problem is ours?  Is there a solution?  You can count on it!  The Bible has all of our solutions for life and godliness.  Today's solution?  Well it comes from Matthew 7:1-5.  And without further delay, here's the solution:

Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.
And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.

I hope you have a great day today!  And I hope you will be able to find the source of any pain that you have been encountering in many different circumstances.