Brian Shaffer's Week 4 Post on Proverbs
Like the useless legs of one who is lame is a proverb in the mouth of a fool. (NIV)
“It is a poor workman that blames his tools” It isn’t the tool at fault it works as well as the person using it. Different tools have different jobs as well and a craftsman knows what tool works best for every task. Maybe you’ve come across the nut that has been rounded off with a pair of pliers or maybe the screw that has had its threads stripped. All indications of someone untrained or hurried in their work. It takes the skill of a craftsman to get the most out of a toolbox. The novice and the craftsman use the same tools but it is the skill of the craftsman that makes the difference in the outcome of the project.
There are a lot of times I feel useless in situations. I don’t have the right words to say or I don’t know what to do to help. There have been times that I went ahead and did the only thing I knew how to do or said the first thing that came to my mind. Most of the time, despite my good intentions, it doesn’t work out very well.
In this case, the proverb is just as good as when God gave it to the writer but it is the fool delivering it that makes it useless. In the right context, delivered correctly, the proverb would be a blessing for the receiver. Hearing the proverb badly quoted and out of context would be like being handed a butter knife after you ask for a plunger. Worthless.
Other situations where I felt there was nothing I could do, I was surprised when I found myself being used by God to help in a way that I didn’t expect. Someone that expertly works with his tools knows each of their abilities as well as their strengths and weaknesses. A craftsman is able to use a tool to do something that maybe isn’t its strongest feature but still create a beautiful result. If you ever find yourself thinking you are a certain type of person, a certain tool in a toolbox be aware of the Master’s hand. Because when he wraps his hand around you and pulls you out of the toolbox he may use you in a way that you didn’t expect. Don’t worry though, he never blames his tools and he always creates a masterpiece.
Lord thank you for the gifts and skills you have given me. I pray that I use them in ways that will please you. Help me feel your presence when I am called and let me respond quickly and wholeheartedly knowing I am doing your will. Let the praise be yours Lord when my work is completed. In your name Amen.