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The Fifth Tool in the Toolbox

30 September, 2009

So Tom Elliff was at ILC again on Thursday the 17th, and he went through five tools that we will use on the field when relating to other people.  These tools “are in a green toolbox with a black handle and a broken clasp.”   I still haven’t figured out what that means.  Regardless, I felt like the things he had to say were extremely well founded and useful.

These tools were forgiveness, breaking the power of words, listening, loving, and the emergency tool.

The last tool in the toolbox he described was so important that he didn’t want us to write any notes, but just pay attention.  So since I am a more picture-memory type person, I can’t remember anything verbatim.  But I’ll try my best.  The tool is called the Emergency-Fall-Back-On tool.

The first point in the 3-point alliteration was to remember that:

There is design God’s direction for you. When we trust in the direction of our Lord in our life, we can rest in that assurance.  When people fail us again and again, we must remember that what we are in a different country to do is make disciples of all nations.  If we are there and focused on doing that, we are in God’s direction, and there is perfect design in that.  We pray that there will never be a time when God’s direction and our teammates directions are separate, but we can be assured that sticking to God’s direction will be the ultimately joyful, ultimately glorious path to follow.

The second point is:

There are dangers in your desires. This is very important to remember when attempting to maintain good relationships with others.  Psalm 37.4 is an beautiful promise if it is taken in the right context.  Committing our way to the LORD will cause the desires of our heart to changed into the desires that God has presented to us all along.  Other than that, “the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?” (jeremiah 17.9)  We must be diligent to carefully discern where our desires are founded when relating to others.  If there is conflict, am I seeking my desires or the desires of Christ?

And the third point is that:

There is dependability in your Deliverer. The overarching theme throughout all of this talk of relationships is that our Deliverer, Jesus Christ is the great Mediator and the great Healer.  We can trust in Him to be constant and perfectly good and all wise.  As Augustine (not the Bible) says, He is, “unchangeable, yet changing all things; never new, never old; making all things new.”  Our God is true, and His ways are true, and when all else fails, He is still true.  And faithful.  Hopefully I can write a post about my recent musings on faith soon.  Faith is such a big word.

So there is your toolbox for relationships.  A green toolbox, with a black handle, and a broken clasp.  I hope it means as much to you as it does to me.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Ricky Rondo permalink
    12 October, 2009 19:59

    That’s an extremely encouraging post even for those who aren’t going into foreign missions. It is good to hear, thanks for posting it.

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