CALLUSES & CHARITY, continued.
Have you read the first part of this story about calluses and charity? I hope you have, here’s the link in case you missed it: http://www.silverandgoldfriendship.com/callouses-charity-part-1/
because you would learn a little about Grandpa, a hardened, weathered man with calloused hands tough enough to wrestle a cow tangled in a fence yet gentle enough to ever-so-gently touch grandma’s cheek in a soft look of love, a love that grew over years of a life together through the tough times and the good.
When I wrote of Grandpa’s calloused hands, I explained how those calluses were formed. It took years of repetitive hard labor to build the thick skin which hardened his leathery hands. When Grandpa started a job, whether it was working with a rope on the ranch or pounding nails on the construction crew, his hands needed to become accustomed to the work. This didn’t happen without those annoying blisters forming, an irritation under the skin and if the work continued, would soon fester to the surface and become raw and painful. It was then, Grandpa always made the decision to keep going…he wouldn’t let the irritation get in the way of finishing the job set before him.
Over time, those hundreds of blisters turned to calluses. There was no way of knowing which blister came from which job, his hands were just hardened, calloused and leathered. But as hardened as his hands were, his heart remained soft and years of wisdom guided each movement of those hands.
God planned for calluses from the beginning of man.
It’s the way God planned it. Grandpa had a job to do which required his hands to become hardened, calloused and tough. But he always remained gentle and wiser with each passing year. He never stopped.
We all have a job to do, but any job, done on a repetitive basis, gets to the point of irritating, and we then must make the decision, the same one Grandpa had to make: Do we keep going or do we stop before the finish line? Do we put up with the irritation to the point of becoming calloused, but still remain gentle and wise?
I see this same attitude in giving to charity or performing “charity work.” We must ask ourselves: do we stop when it gets irritating or do we continue until we reach the hardened calloused and leathered stage?
Charity by definition is being generous or beneficial to fellow humans.
When we enter into charity work or we give to others in the name of charity, do we keep going long past the irritation stage to the point of building up the calluses to keep working? How do we remain gentle when we are callused by giving to charity? How do we become wise in doing this work?
Follow with me over the next few weeks, as we explore the work of charity. We’ll explore the many aspects of how charity is used, some of the ways will be beneficial and some not so beneficial. I’ll think you’ll be amazed at what you thought was great charity really is not. Then maybe, you’ll learn how a calloused hand and gentle heart works well together while doing the work of charity.