Big Hill Bible Studies
29 June Entry
Today I'd like to draw your attention to one particular thought that has always been a favorite of mine. Look to verse 4 in chapter 14;
"Where no oxen are, the manger is clean, But much revenue
comes by the strength of the ox."
I live in the south side of Lexington and typically drive the back roads to Richmond. I drive by some horse farms and see some big horse stables. In the middle of these farms is a small home on a corner that has just completed construction of a new, small barn. The barn looks to be very well built. It is very clean and neat. The reason it is neat, clean, and sharp is because I have yet to see a horse on the land there. There is no need to clean the stalls or make any repairs because there are no horses in or around the stable.
Solomon states that there are some advantages to an empty manger. There is no need to bring any feed, do any cleaning, or make any repairs. But it is also impossible to get any work done without the oxen present. If you want to accomplish any work, you will need to break from a sterile appearance. As regards the church, the work we must do requires us to leave the sanctuary, roll up our sleeves and get our hands dirty.
I have a prime example and illustration for you. Our financial committee has recently approved a bid to have the carpeting cleaned in our sanctuary. Why? The reason is primarily because we have had VBS recently, we have dinners every Wednesday evening in the room. We have had wedding and baby showers, chili cook-offs, family game nights, and these are just some of the events I can think of right off. We could have clean carpets and keep them clean and protected. The sanctuary could be a "museum" and not get dirty, but that is not what we believe the Lord has planned for the family here. We are to gather together, feed the hungry, raise our children in the Lord, and enjoy the fellowship. When we do these things, walls get nicked, spaghetti, cake and pop will be spilled, and we will rejoice in the fact we have kids to spill pop and drop a plate of spaghetti. Thankful we have food to share with others, and the fellowship that sometimes push chairs into walls. But this is only a minor picture of things "getting dirty." What do you see that needs to be done that requires you to be involved and mess up your manger? Let me know what you think.