Is Your Axe Dull?

In our Wednesday evening teen class, we are studying a series of lessons designed to instill biblically-based leadership traits in our teens. We hope to plant a seed in each teen’s heart that will help them recognize that anyone can be a leader, whether it be at school, church, or within their families. Our most recent lesson was based on a scripture from Ecclesiastes: If the axe is dull and its edge unsharpened, more strength is needed, but skill will bring success (Ecclesiastes 10:10).

In a busy, hectic world, we exert a lot of energy trying to achieve our goals, but we often strive to achieve these goals without first making sure we have the right tools to do the job and without making sure our tools are in top-notch condition! This scripture from Ecclesiastes reminds us that hard work is important, but it is even more important to take time to let God equip us for the struggles we encounter in this world. “Sharpening the axe” as we prepare to face challenges in our spiritual life may involve different things for different people. One suggestion we discussed involved setting aside a consistent time each day to study, pray, and allow God to
“feed us” as we prepare ourselves for the challenges of the day. We read John 6:35 and were reminded that we must eat of the “bread of life” before we can lead, feed, or serve others. We discussed finding mentors to help equip us as is mentioned in Proverbs 27:17 (“as iron sharpens iron, one man sharpens another”). Finally, we discussed the importance of rest and maybe even a “digital vacation” to help clear and sharpen our minds in preparation for the struggles of the world.

These scriptures we studied last week reminded me of the importance of working smarter rather than harder by taking the time to allow God to provide us with the tools we need to serve others, solve problems, and live more like Christ.