Running Smoothly

Our lawn mower was recently out of commission for about 2 ½ weeks.  It didn’t need a major repair, (the pull cord had snapped and needed replacing) but that was enough to take it out of service.

Jessie in Our Overgrown Backyard!
Jessie in Our Overgrown Backyard!

Predictably, with the warmer weather and gentle rains of spring, the grass (and weeds) in our backyard quickly grew out of control. Clif finally got the new cord installed this past weekend just in time for Jason to cut the lawn of a friend who pays him for the service. Since he hadn’t had any problems with the mower, I assumed that all was well. So the following evening I grabbed the machine, intent on quickly knocking down the overgrowth behind the house. (Sometimes I actually enjoy the exercise and solitude of mowing the grass!)

I filled the tank, checked the oil, primed the carburetor and pulled the cord… but nothing happened.  Again.  Again.  Again.  Nothing.  I tinkered and adjusted everything I could think of and pulled over and over… always with the same result.  In frustration, I finally gave up and sent Clif a terse text informing him that the lawn mower wouldn’t start again.

A short time later, he arrived home to give me a hand. He knelt down, gave the engine an examining once-over, adjusted some hidden loose bolt under the gas tank and then gave it a pull… it started up effortlessly!

Soon the weeds felt my wrath as I set out on my happy, self-propelled way, trimming up our neglected yard.  It was so easy for Clif to fix the mower because he knows much more about small engines than I do, and thus knew exactly what to look for to identify and quickly remedy the problem.

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. ~ John 14:26

Often, we as believers, see a job that needs to be accomplished and eagerly set out to achieve good and righteous goals in our own strength. When things don’t go as smoothly or quickly as we hoped or planned, we often double our efforts, once, twice, three times… often trying relentlessly until we collapse in exasperation or give up in frustration and futility. Finally in desperation, we call out to God for help and then stand amazed when He steps in and in His time, provides what we need to get things running smoothly.

You know, I would never have guessed that it was something unseen that was hindering the flow of gasoline from the carburetor to the engine, keeping it from starting. In a similar way, there are a myriad of unseen things that can hinder us from being spiritually productive … things that often we can’t possibly see or understand. But we can trust the Holy Spirit to expertly assess every situation correctly. Every time.

So, as you attend to your responsibilities today, eliminate unnecessary frustration and wasted time. Call out to your Helper first. Trust Him to help you get going and keep things running smoothly until the task is complete.


18 thoughts on “Running Smoothly

  1. Loved the analogy, Karen! Nice purple heart too.

    Your word is on point as usual and your writing style makes the content ever a pleasure to read.

    There was one particular area of my life I was trying to handle on my own for the past 20 years (believe it or not) and I’ve just recently given over to God.

    Now that I’ve submitted this area to my Helper I’m going to ‘rest’ and watch Him work so that I can enjoy the smooth running under His expert care!

    Thanks for the encouragement, Karen! God bless!

  2. I definitely struggle with this. I’ll try and try to identify the problem, becoming exasperated and exhausted in the process. If I’d just stop and ask the Lord, perhaps I could avoid all this frustration. Great reminder!

  3. Great post, Karen…hope you had a great Mother’s Day! Recently, we have been having the same issues with our leaf blower. My hubby gets too frustrated upon starting it and uses up all of his energy on pulling that silly rope until he nearly loses his mind! He can take it over to our son’s and all he needs to do is pull it once and it starts right up! I really do think the hubs needs to pray before he tries to start it…lol! I’m serious! We humans can certainly get all jacked out of shape when there is no need to, can’t we? The words of that old song comes to mind here…”His strength is perfect when our strength is gone….” And just to let you know, I wouldn’t have mowed off ANY of those beautiful little blue “weeds” blooming 🙂 Have a good week!

  4. What a well written and timely article! When you said, “Call out to your helper first. Trust Him to help get you going…” I so needed this this morning. Thanks for sharing on Waiting on…Wednesday.

  5. Guilty! I try to work things out on my own and end up with a bigger mess. It would be so much easier if I would ask for help in the beginning, my mess would be a lot smaller. Thank you for linking up with Thankful Thursdays.

  6. So much truth here, Karen. And I’m guilty. I’ll try everything before crying out for help. Thanks for the wonderful reminder that the Lord is waiting and wants to hear my cries for His presence and help. Blessings!

  7. Excellent post!

    I too often am that person that persistently tries to figure stuff out on her own. I am a researcher by nature, but that is no excuse not to call upon my Heavenly Helper, the Holy Spirit, as my first line of defense.

    Thank you so much for the reminder that I have an ever present Help.

  8. Perhaps it’s a natural tendency of man’s fallen nature to resist asking for God’s help until we are at our wits end. Thank you, Karen, for another excellent post.

  9. Hi Karen, such a great analogy and I love your mowed heart. Its so true that after struggling with stuff ourselves we only then seek help. I know I definitely need to reach out to God sooner than I do. It’ll prevent a great deal of frustration and anxiety. Great post and thanks for linking up
    God bless

  10. Hi Karen! I am popping over from My Daily Walk In His Grace blog hop. And I am so blessed that I did. So often I tend to try to do things on my own before asking for help from the Holy Spirit. One would think after so many times of doing so and enduring the frustrations that come along with it, I would go directly to him first …. ( I am still a work in progress ) Thank you for a wonderful reminder today!! God bless!!

  11. Great reminder today! So often we forge ahead in our own strength forgetting we don’t need to! Yes, God wants us to take action, but not without Him!

    1. Thanks Lyli! I think we all have to learn and re-learn the lesson to ask for help on the front end to avoid a lot of frustration on the back end!

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