Speaking Of Life 1031 | Fixed Point
Have you ever had the opportunity to plow a field? It’s not as easy as you might think.
I know a man who spent a summer as a teenager working on his uncle’s farm. He was thrilled when he got his hands on the large farm tractor used for plowing. His uncle tried to teach him how to plow the weeds between rows of flourishing soybean plants. He was to keep his eyes on a visual fixed point that his uncle had set in front of the tractor. When he came to the end of the row, he would have to lift the plows, turn the tractor around and then reset the plows – again, focusing on that fixed point. At first, all went well. But when he turned the tractor and reset the plows, he would sometimes lose sight of that fixed point. He recalls the sinking feeling of looking back at his work only to discover that instead of plowing between the soybean plants, he had plowed between the weeds.
His uncle was patient, but when the price of training began to exceed the profit of farming, the young nephew’s duties had to be reassigned.
This story reminds me of the over-zealous disciples and under-eager villagers who wanted to follow Jesus – but had their own “fixed point” in mind. Jesus’ response to this was:
“No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:62)
That can be a disheartening thing to hear for anyone excited about following Jesus. Like the young nephew who did more damage than good in plowing his uncle’s soybean fields, we too often put our hand to the plow only to find that we are not fit for the job.
Before we get too discouraged though, maybe we should revisit how Luke records the beginning of this story. Luke says about Jesus:
“When the days drew near for him to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem.” (Luke 9:51)
It is Jesus who has put his hand to the plow. Jesus set his sight on the “fixed point” of the cross where he removed the weeds of sin from his Father’s field. As we turn to him, we find that he is our new “fixed point” that enables us to plow ahead into the kingdom he is bringing us into. And as we enter daily into his kingdom, we encounter his Father in the Spirit, who has made us his “fixed point.” With Jesus’ hands on the plow, we can know he will never turn his back on us.
I’m Heber Ticas, Speaking of Life