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Categorized | From the Pulpit

Keep digging

Rev. Bobby Gray

Solid Rock Worship Center

11862 Shaner Ave NE, Cedar Springs

Years ago, I heard a pastor rehearse a unique story about an acquaintance. The man had been country-born, country-bred, and, as he said, “When I die, I will be country-dead.” The gentleman had a unique spin on life. He left the farm and pursued higher education and went on to become a very wealthy entrepreneur. Late in life he decided to go back and purchase the old home place. The house his father built many years before was now in disrepair. Weeds and debris covered the yard as well as the entire acreage that had once been the family farm. He hired the finest architects to design the restoration.

While they were busy with the renovation and restoration of the home place, he secured some local well-diggers to re-dig the old shallow well on the property. The man remembered when he was just a small boy that his father had dug this well himself. Through the years of his growing up, it had served the family. Yet, now, it had long since been filled with all kinds of rubbish and rubble. Many years had passed since it had been functional.

After several days away from the work himself, the gentleman revisited the site. The men informed him the well had successfully been re-dug. He went over and looked at the pile of debris tdhey had excavated. He turned to the foreman on the job and said, “Sir, I regret to inform you that the task is not yet completed. You have not actually dug to the bottom yet. Please keep digging.”

He went back to the city for several days and upon his return was again told the well had been re-dug, additional refuse had been removed from the old well. Again, he passed the foreman and said, “Keep digging. You still have not reached the bottom.”

On his third visit back to the home place, the foreman told him, “Sir, we have completely re-dug this well. We simply cannot dig any deeper.” Upon inspection of the dregs last hauled out with this last excavation, the owner nodded his head in agreement.

The foreman, almost in jest, said, “You never looked in the well. You only looked at the trash heap. How do you know we really completed the job this time?”

The old gentleman walked over to the top of the most recent pile of debris and picked up the old rusty and dilapidated remains of a teakettle. He said, “You see this teakettle? I was just a little boy the day my father completed this well and told us it was filling with water. For some mysterious and mischievous reason, I slipped out and threw this teakettle into the well to hear it splash at the bottom. Needless to say, I was in trouble with my mother when she discovered her teakettle was gone. When the digging began, I knew this simple fact: since that teapot was the first thing that fell into the well, it would be the last thing that came out.”

I wonder what the teapot is in our well that needs to be extracted.

Ephesians 4:31-32: “Get rid of all bitterness, rage, and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”

Maybe we have dug several times trying to get “to the bottom of things.” Life has a way of sometimes stepping on you. It has its own rhythm of “catch and release.” Things can get in our spirits. God’s kids sometimes have a way of getting under our skin. If they stay there, they will fester, and then there is trouble. How do we clean out our well? There is nothing to do but keep digging until we get to the teapot. If it does not get in our spirit, it cannot control our destiny.

 The point of the story and verse: Keep digging!

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