On Christmas morning, a farmer found his daughter in the barn mucking out a stall. Manure flew in giant clumps as her shovel moved ever faster. The father rubbed his grizzled chin. “Child, what are you doing? Your presents are waiting inside under the tree.” The girl’s cheeks bloomed, rosy with exertion and excitement. “I asked Santa for a pony. Look at all this manure! There has to be a pony in here somewhere!”
This old joke contains a lesson I’ve come to value. It’s easy to find manure. Even when you think your stall is clean at last, someone or something dumps a fresh load in your life. It’s much harder to find the faith to dig out again.
I write because I have lived. Some days I’ve found the pony! Other days all I see is manure. May I share with you the tips I’ve learned along the way? I’d like to encourage you “. . . to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised” (Hebrews 10:36 NIV).