Snow is still swirling as I step out into the crisp pre-dawn air. A foot of drifting powder lies waiting on the driveway, glowing faintly in the early morning light. The scraaaape, scraaaape of my shovel soon pierces the hushed aura, each scoop barely making a difference in the thick white blanket surrounding me.
I pause now and then to hear others working as well. Private snowplows clearing local driveways grind and crunch softly in the distance. Envy creeps in. Our neighbor used to plow our drive for us. Someone equipped with the right tools makes very quick work of this task — but unfortunately, that neighbor moved away.
I hear the drone of a snowblower a few houses down, and every so often a giant town plow rumbles past on the road — effortlessly clearing thick piles of slush. Meanwhile, I slowly chip away at the job in front of me. Either the snow gets heavier or this driveway gets longer with every passing storm.
Sometimes our efforts in Christian service may feel like shoveling deep snow off a long driveway. We can feel overwhelmed and ineffective…lacking the power, the charisma, the tools of some other more “well-equipped” Christians. They can make the job look so easy – in fact, we may feel a little jealous of them… but at the same time, we’re worried they might move away and leave us with all the responsibility!
Maybe we’ve even felt a sense of inferiority or frustration when a big evangelist “plows” through our area. They can move an entire wave of unbelievers to faith in one quick pass… but we’ve been working so long with far less visible results! Is all the effort with our small shovels worth it?
1 Corinthians 12 says: The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ… God has put each part just where he wants it… In fact, some parts of the body that seem weakest and least important are actually the most necessary.
Even though the Lord hasn’t given each one of us a “plow” to use, we all have an important part in His kingdom. The question is, are we still outside working with the tools He’s given us? Or are we staying indoors, hoping someone else will come along to clear the driveway?
– Ron Reid