Thankful for the Chisels


As I read through the chapter in my Bible study this morning, a couple of sentences caught my attention… “God has placed you exactly where you are according to His purposes. Thank Him for that today. Write a commitment to not dwell on how some of these people have let you down.” – Lysa TerKeurst from What Happens When Women Walk in Faith.

It made me think about all of the people God has put around me, past and present. There have been good and not-so-good relationships, obviously, because we’re all human. But how many times have I thanked God for the negative from others that has actually IMPROVED my life? The painful things people have said and done that actually led me to a more positive place? The objective criticisms that have sharpened my perspective.

Then a picture of a chisel came to mind. Chisel = a metal tool with a flat, sharp end that is used to cut and shape a solid material (such as stone, wood, or metal). There are a ton of different types of chisels, all used for various reasons. For example, a carving chisel is used for intricate, detailed sculpting. A flooring chisel lifts flooring materials for removal and repair. A skew chisel is used for finishing. The list goes on.

Every person who comes into our lives is there for a reason. It may not be apparent until years later, but each one is being used to sculpt, repair, and finish us. These wonderful people are not there to make us complain. They are not put there for us to judge, be envious of, or gossip about, although that’s what satan would have us do. They are also not put there for us to allow our thoughts about them and hurts that they’ve caused to suck us down into a spiral of bitterness.

It’s easy to get caught up in bitterness… and it happens slowly. That life-destroying trap almost cost me my marriage. It led me to a negative spiral that affected every single person in my life. Thankfully, God rescued me from that prison several months ago… but only after I submitted.

So, today I’m thanking God for the people He brings to mind who are and have been chisels in my life. When I look back, and look at where I am now, it’s amazing to see how God has been methodically putting me together as the person He created me to be.

My challenge to you is to think about the people in your life who you may be harboring bitterness toward. Maybe you are angry and have allowed this anger to take control of your mind. It’s time to let it go and realize that there’s a REASON for everyone who is in your life. Thank God for those people and learn to love the purpose they are in chiseling you to become who God created YOU to be.


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