Taking off the gloves
“And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap,
if we faint not.” Gal. 6:9
“Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.
Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus.” Phil. 2:4,5
A week on a mountain top, that’s what I was looking forward to; rock-climbing, cross-country skiing, and according to the instructors; during the day when the sun is shining, it’s so warm you can wear a t-shirt. Sounded great, especially since it was December and down at the base of the mountain, it was very cold. But before we could ascend, we had to learn some things.
For starters, some of us didn’t know how to ski, and on a snow-covered mountain that was the only way to travel. We’d been fitted for skis and were lined up to begin our lesson. A light snow was falling. There was the smell of burning wood in the air. It was rustic, it was exciting; then our instructor spoke.
“Take off your gloves.”
“Take off your gloves,” he repeated.
I’m thinking, ‘okay,’ as I glance to my left and right to make sure I wasn’t the only one doing this.
“Now put your gloves in your coat pockets, and leave them there,” he said.
My first thought is, ‘gloves in my pockets, that’s where I’m putting my hands.’
“Now take your ski poles.” The words that followed I didn’t really hear because in my mind I’m thinking how cold my hands are becoming.
“Just keep moving your fingers,” he said.
Okay, moving fingers, moving fingers, still cold.
At that point I’m sure he began demonstrating how to use our ski poles, but I’m not hearing him. My mind is saying, “Burning, my hands are freezing.”
“Just keep moving those fingers, you’ll adapt,” came his words.
Adapt? You’re nuts. My hands really hurt.
But then it happened. Don’t get me wrong, things didn’t change in thirty seconds; we’re talking some real stinging pain for maybe five minutes? But then, suddenly - the pain disappeared. I was moving my fingers and my hands didn’t hurt. Instead, it seemed as if the outer layer of my skin had thickened and turned to leather. It felt like I was wearing gloves, but I wasn’t. My hands had adapted.
Now, this got me thinking. How often have I not done what I should do because it would take me out of my comfort zone. And how often have I shied away from doing something I know the Lord would have me do, because I was too concerned about the repercussions, or worried about what others might think. I’m glad my Lord didn’t do that when he faced Calvary for me.
As Christians we are called to serve, to get out of ourselves and look for ways to be of service to others. In two weeks, we at First Baptist will be holding our annual Fall Festival. Hundreds of people will be in attendance, many for the first time. It will be a fun time, but also a great opportunity to be of service to others.
Is there something God wants you to do? Take off those gloves.
In His Service, Jerry