Published August 17, 2010

Shelia Shares....
"Extending Your Reach"

As Paul looked out the front door, he said, "Look at the squirrel!"

Our visitor, little Garrett, ran to the front door, stood on his tippy-toes and said, "I see it! I see it!"

He wanted to go out and catch the squirrel, so we opened the door and out he ran. With his two-year-old enthusiasm, he headed toward the street. We quickly headed him back into the yard. Although it was obvious he had not actually seen the squirrel, he did enjoy being outside and on the run. We again pointed to the tree with the squirrel.

Garrett looked at the tree and then ran to get a stick. It was a big stick and it took all his effort to bring the stick to the tree. He raised the stick into the air and tried to hit the tree, all the while saying he was going to get the squirrel. The tree was a big one and that's where the problem started. When Garrett tried to hit the tree, he couldn't reach even the lowest branches. He tried a couple of times. His solution was to use his stick to hit lower branches on another tree which he could reach. However, that tree didn't contain the squirrel (a fact that didn't seem to bother Garrett).

Sometimes we pick up our big sticks and hit the trees around us. It takes a lot of work and we're enthusiastic. We work hard. But we limit ourselves to doing what we think can be done. We hit the little tree and give up reaching for the big tree where the work needs to be done. We do what we are capable of doing. We do what we think can be done.

Garrett could have used his stick to hit the big tree, if he had just asked us for a "lift." His reach would have been extended and the potential for success , although slim, would have increased.

We can also extend our reach. We can be enabled to be and do more than we ever thought possible. All we need to do is ask for a "lift." We need to ask for God's enabling, for God's direction, for God's power.

When God comes into the picture, that's when we connect with the work that needs to be done and that's when we succeed in making a difference.

Don't swing your stick at the little trees in your way, all the while knowing the real work is somewhere else. Ask God for His enabling. I am persuaded that He is able to accomplish through us all that He wants accomplished. When we are willing to ask Him, He is willing to hold out His arms and lift us. That's when the real work gets done.

- Shelia

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