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Posted by Lisa Lewis Koster - - 3 comments

While working on our new fire pit, my husband Bob had a bit of a mishap with the ax.   As he was swinging to chop at the tree whose roots refused to let go, the ax head separated from the handle and went flying.  (Praise God no one was hurt!) I had forgotten about a similar incident in Scripture until I read it in Del Fehsenfeld Jr.'s book, "Ablaze with His Glory." 

Some of Elisha's disciples had asked for permission to build a new dwelling place and, once it was granted, invited the prophet to join them.  "As one of them was cutting down a tree, the iron axhead fell into the water. “Oh no, my lord!” he cried out. “It was borrowed!” The man of God asked, “Where did it fall?” When he showed him the place, Elisha cut a stick and threw it there, and made the iron float. “Lift it out,” he said. Then the man reached out his hand and took it. ~ 2 Kings 6:5-7  It's so easy to read verses like this and just keep on going, but Fehsenfeld brought out some amazing parallels to the Christian walk.  

He said the ax handle represents our own natural abilities and efforts, all we are apart from Christ.

The ax head corresponds to the supernatural power and presence of Jesus Christ in our lives.

When we're working in conjunction with God through the power of the Holy Spirit, His supernatural power of the ax head is at work as we expend effort to wield our ax handle.  Unfortunately for many of us, we have lost the head to our ax and haven't even noticed!  We keep ourselves busy with many things and work feverishly, but it seems like we're getting nowhere because we're not! 

Imagine what it would have looked like had the prophet with the ax failed to recognize (or admit) that he had lost the head to the ax - his source of power. Sure, he could keep swinging that handle, he could even make contact with the tree; if he worked hard enough maybe there would even be a few wood chips flying. He could have perfect form with his swing and work intensely, but at the end of the day he'd still have nothing to show for his efforts.

It sounds ridiculous, doesn't it?  Yet that, my friends, is what God sees when we try to do anything apart from Him. 

Do you see yourself swinging a headless handle in any (or every) area of your life?  The good news is God not only exposes this dilemma, but in the very same verse He reveals the solution!  All we need to do is follow the prophet's example.  His first response was to cry out to his master (Elisha) for help.  If we call Jesus "Lord," that means He is our master. If Elisha came to the aid of his disciple, how much more will God come to the aid of one of His own? We're all just one cry away from all the power we could ever need! 

Father, so often I call you "Lord" and yet fail to act like you are my master. Please forgive me for all of the times I've attempted to accomplish anything apart from you.  I can see now that all that effort has been for naught. Please, once again connect me with the power of your Holy Spirit, that I might once again work in your power and strength.  

P.S. I intended to tell you more about the book, "Ablaze with His Glory," but this post went longer than I expected.  Please join me again for my next post and I'll tell you all about this must-read!

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3 Responses so far.

  1. Faith says:

    WOw...i love this analogy! I'll have to look for that book, too. Thanks for a great post!!

  2. Oh yes, how we need the Holy Spirit and the supernatural working in our lives. Why not! This is a great story and your illustrations are awesome. Thank you for sharing here at "Tell Me a Story."

  3. caryjo says:

    Boy, you really grabbed my heart. I sure know we must be on target and focusing on the Lord and waiting for His instructions, not just setting aside and failing to be and do what He calls us to do, instantaneously. That is a very good example, scripturally, and a very good prayer. Need to do what I'm called to do, period!

    Again...thank you. AND again... just finished re-reading The Harbinger, and it really grabbed me in the last couple chapters. Truly laid out the salvation and the call of service to our Lord. Gotta show the DVD to my hubby and my spiritual brother very soon. It's good!

    Bless you.

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