A story has been told about two lumberjacks Ole and Sven. The first, Ole, was a young man tall and strong. You know the type with muscles on top of muscles. The second, Sven, was a middle aged man, not especially impressive in stature or looks. Both men went out to the woods with their axes to cut down a section of trees the boss told them to cut. Ole started the day out well. By noon he had 10 trees cut down and ready for loading. But the in the afternoon things slowed down. He only cut down another five. He looked over at Sven’s pile. He had 20. Now Ole was a little embarrassed to be shown up by an older man. So the next day he tried harder. But he was only able to cut down 13 trees to Sven’s 20. The third day Ole kept an Eye on Sven as he worked. He noticed that every so often Sven would take a break and disappear into the woods for a while and return to get back to work. At the end of the day Ole had cut down even fewer trees and Sven, well he cut down 21.
At the end of the day Ole took Sven aside and asked, “What is your secret? I work hard all day without any breaks and I keep seeing less and less progress. You on the other hand take several breaks throughout the day and you keep cutting down more trees than I do.”
Sven looked at Ole and said “When’s the last time to you sharpened your axe?”
Ole responded, “Sharpen my axe. I’ve been working so hard I haven’t had time to sharpen my axe.” To which Sven replied, “There is your problem. I take breaks throughout the day not just to rest the body but to sharpen my tools. Dull tools make for ineffective work.”
That is so true of much of life. We need to have sharp tools with which to work. Sometimes sharpening the tools requires getting some rest. Sometimes it involved getting some training. Other times it requires us to get some counseling. Sometimes it involves getting new and better resources to work with.
In your life what would it take to “get sharp” once again? Take some time think it through. Then take the time to get it done. The better our tools, the better our impact will be as the body of Christ.