It would be maddening if it were not so funny. One day not long ago it occurred to me that I dropped just about everything I put in my hands. When I had a jar of mayonnaise slip from my hands to the floor one day, I yelled in frustration, “WELL, JUST THROW IT ON THE FLOOR!”
Terry heard me and walked into the kitchen. “Goodness gracious, Branchie! What did you do?” She gathered up some paper towels to help me clean up the mess,
“I can’t hold on to things to things anymore, Babe. I drop just about everything I put in my hands. With this jar of mayonnaise, I just as well have thrown it on the floor to begin with.”
It was then that she confessed to having the same problem, citing a couple recent examples. She dropped a jar of olives, which made a mess, and she dropped a bottle of pills, which scattered all around. Both items just slipped from her hand and fell to the floor, just as pretty as you please. So, when we have something slip from our hands, we say sharply, “Well, just throw it on the floor!” It is amazing how many times during the course of the day that we have been saying it. No doubt, it has got to be an age-related factor.
But, think about it. Regardless of age, we also let a variety of things slip from our hands on a frequent basis, and not necessarily food items or other materials. For example, we let good opportunities slip from our hands, primarily, because we do not think things through.
It is in II Kings 13 that we are told of an incident involving King Joash of Israel and the prophet, Elisha. During the visit, Elisha instructed Joash to take in hand a bow and some arrows. It is said that Elisha put his hands upon the hands of Joash. Evidently this signaled a moment of prophetic opportunity with the application of the prophet’s hands.
When the prophet said to shoot an arrow, the king did. In the process, Elisha proclaimed in describing terms, “The arrow of the Lord’s deliverance, and the arrow of deliverance from Syria: for you shall smite the Syrians till you have consume them.”
But, the prophecy was not complete. Eisha directed Joash to strike the ground with the handful of arrows. The king struck the ground three times. This made Elisha very angry for the following reason, “You should have struck the ground five or six times, then you would have smitten Syria till you consumed them! But now, you shall smite Syria only three times.”
Joash let a good opportunity for completed victory slip right through his hands simply because he did not think things through. He just threw a distinct opportunity right on the floor!
Then there are the times we let things slip through our hands simply because we refuse to depend upon the Lord’s perspective of things at hand. We depend upon our own perspective of situations and interpretations of matters at hand.
The Apostle Paul learned this lesson. He had a “thorn in the flesh,” about which he implored God three times to remove because it made him weak. It was his perspective that he would better off without it.
However, Paul learned God’s perspective, who said, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my strength is made perfect in weakness.” God’s perspective was that Paul was better off experiencing God’s grace with the thorns rather than not experiencing God’s grace without the thorns.
Paul then came to the proper conclusion about possessing God’s perspective of matters. “Therefore, I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake, for when I am weak, then am I strong.”
Do not let God’s perspective slip through your hands.
In the meantime, to let things slip through my hand, and say “Well, just throw it on the floor”——just does not make me feel any better.
Pastor Ron Branch lives in Mason County and is pastor of Hope Baptist Church, Middleport, Ohio. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author.