An out-of-towner drove his car into a ditch in a desolated area. Fortunately, a local farmer came to help with his big strong horse named Buddy. He hitched Buddy up to the car and yelled, “Pull, Nellie, pull!” Buddy did no move. Then the farmer hollered, “Pull, Buster, pull!” Buddy did not respond. Once more the farmer commanded, “Pull, Coco, pull!” Nothing.
Then the farmer nonchalantly said, “Pull, Buddy, pull!” And the horse easily dragged the car out of the ditch.
The motorist was most appreciative but very curious. He asked the farmer why he had called his horse by the wrong name three times. The farmer said, “Oh, Buddy is blind and if he thought he was the only one pulling, he wouldn’t even had tried.”
We are a lot like Buddy. We don’t like to do something if we think we’re the only one pulling. Need an example? Did you ever say, “Why should I put my time and effort into the work of the church? No one else seems to care!” Or, “Why should I put forth the extra effort to do a good job at work? No one else does, and it wouldn’t be appreciated anyway!” Or, “Why should I be nice to him/her? He’s /she’s certainly not going to make any effort to be nice to me!”
See what I mean? Like Elijah in the cave, we say to God, “I alone am left” (1 Kings 19:10). Nobody else is faithful. Nobody else is trying. But God told Elijah He had 7,000 on his side. Like Buddy and Elijah, we may be blind. Blind to what others are doing around us. But, even if we are the only one doing what is right, we need to continue.
“And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not loose heart” (Galatians 6:9).
Hang in there, there is work to be done!
Alan Smith, University Blvd. church of Christ, Whitehouse, TN