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4. Plow Looking Straight Ahead

Plowing a straight furrow was easy, I thought. I didn’t need my father or grandfather telling me what to do.

The first furrow plowed was the most important. It had to be straight, especially when you had acres of land to plow. Each time back and forth you had to put the right wheels of your tractor into the furrow you had just plowed. This was your guide. If you got the first furrow straight, the whole field would end up straight and square. If you got the first furrow crooked, every pass you made was then crooked. This resulted in more time and work at the end of the job, trying to square what was crooked.

Well, Dad had this notion that you should never look back when plowing. You should pick out a spot , such as a tree or fence post, at the end of the field (sometimes hundreds of yards away) and never take your eyes off of it. Keep focused and never look back.

I thought, “How dumb! How are you going to know if you are plowing straight if you don’t look back sometimes to see how you’re doing?”

Throwing Dad’s advice out the window I decided to do it my own way, just once. Looking back I tried to make a straight furrow. Problem is, you can’t steer very well looking back. You keep trying to jerk the wheel one way or another to overcompensate. You can’t straighten out something that’s crooked. (See Ecclesiastes 1:15a).

The words of Christ popped out at me as I read the Bible one day: “No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:62) Dad’s advice was from the Lord!

Too many of us try to steer our lives by looking back. We look back and blame our crookedness on our bad home life, environment, circumstances, abuse, parents, teachers, church, or society, rather than forgetting those things and going on. Go forward. Jesus said don’t look back.

Paul the Apostle said, “Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:13,14).

Pastor Art Kohl

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