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Back to the Drawing Board!

While purchasing the items I needed to service my lawn tractor, I decided to buy new mower blades. I was not sure if the blades needed changing, but after a quick inspection there was no doubt about it. Since I do not have a means to jack the tractor up to access the underside of the mowing deck, it is necessary to remove the entire deck. It is not a complicated process, just one of those things that I do not look forward to. While at it, I cleaned the underside of the equipment, then installed the new blades, put it all back together, and everything was in place to go to work on our yard.

I was delighted to find that as I started mowing that the new blades were cutting as smoothly as a hot knife going through cold butter. All was well for about fifteen minutes, but as I started to mow the road bank I heard a loud noise that alerted me that I had hit something that was far harder than grass. As the object was ejected, immediately I heard a distinct clicking noise from underneath the mower. Since we live by a frequently traveled road that is used not only by personal vehicles but also by a great deal of farm equipment, it is not unusual to find all sorts of bolts and such in the yard (I even found an intact machete out there a few years ago, which has come in quite handy in the yard and garden!) As I searched the area that I was mowing, I found the culprit—a rather large steel pin from an implement hitch with an obvious fresh indention inflicted by my brand new mower blade.

When I looked underneath the mower deck I was not surprised to find two big chunks missing from one of the blades. Shortly before I was relieved to know that I probably would not have to take the deck off the mower until at least after the mowing season, but now after just a few minutes of use I had to do it all over again. Compared to a lot of more serious events in life, I knew it was a minor hiccup but it was still unpleasant.

What do you do in such times? Since there is no need to cry over spilled milk, you just go back to the drawing board and take care of what needs taking care of.

Life is filled with circumstances that we do not foresee and our plans often get altered.

Nevertheless, we deal with what needs to be dealt with and we press on. When those curves in the road are the result of our willful sin, the only effective solution is to turn to God in true repentance and ask for His forgiveness. In such times, the words recorded in 1 John 1:9 are most reassuring: “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness” (New International Version). John also states: “My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have One Who speaks to the Father in our defense—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world” (1 John 2:1-2). It is good to know that when we get off on the wrong track, there is hope and there is a solution.

Since not all of life’s difficulties are due to wrongdoing in our lives, what do we do about those? We do not give up, instead, with God’s help, we move ahead. In Philippians 3:14, Paul writes, “I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”

Sometimes life sends us back to the drawing board. When it does, we must keep pressing on toward the goal that God has for us.