The two brothers were trying to find something fun to do on a Saturday afternoon.
Having just finished watching a television movie that featured the traditional cowboys and Indians conflict, the boys decided to go outside and recreate the action.
The brother who played the Indian had to make his own bow. He found a limb from a tree, cut it down, removed the leaves and proceeded to string it with some butcher’s twine. At last the brother had an official Indian bow. He found a semi-straight golden rod stick to use as an arrow. He placed his arrow on the string pulled back on the bow with all his might and then, “crack” the bow broke in two pieces. The two brothers then decided to go play baseball.
Homemade bows and human beings both have breaking points. Some of us can bend and endure the strain of a little pressure. Some can endure more. But there is such a thing as too much stress, too much bending in our lives.
I am glad that our Lord knows how much we can take. The Word of God tells us in 1 Cor 10:13: “No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.” He will not bend us beyond our breaking point.
The Bible also describes the loving character of our Savior with these words: “A bruised reed He will not break, and smoking flax He will not quench…” (Isaiah 42:3). What a wonderful Lord we have who promises to deal with us in such a way that our little smoking flax is not stomped out.
Without the bow being bent, the arrow sits on the string; without pressure in our lives, we accomplish little for our Lord.
If you are feeling the pressure of being bent, remember two things: First remember that His hand is on the bow; He will bend but never break. Also, it may be that the Lord is bending you in preparation of shooting His effective arrows of service out into this needy world. We all need to be bent a little.
The Rev. Jim Stultz is pastor of Peace River Baptist Church in Punta Gorda. Email him at email@example.com.