"This knife will barely cut butter!" complained Mom as she struggled to cut slices of roast beef for supper. "Our nice dinner is going to look like I ripped it apart with my teeth!"
Dad laughed. "The knife can't be quite that bad," he said, "but I'll take it down to my workshop and sharpen it later this evening."
After dinner, Liz approached her father. "Dad, I'm stuck on this math problem," she said. "Can you help me?" She held out her paper and pencil.
"I'll try," agreed Dad, but he soon handed the pencil back to her. "Do you have a pencil sharpener?" he asked with a grin. "This point is so worn down, I can't write at all with it." Liz quickly sharpened the pencil.
For family devotions that day, Dad read a few verses from Ephesians. "The dull tools we've had around here tonight made me think of the sword that never needs sharpening--the Bible, which is the Word of God," he said. "Our knives and pencils get dull and need to be sharpened pretty often, but God's Word is always sharp and powerful. Of course, we need to get that sword out and use it. Who knows how we do that?"
"Well . . . I guess we use it when we read the Bible," suggested Isaac.
"Yes," said Dad. "God often speaks to us as we read His Word. Sometimes it convicts us of sin and inflicts pain. It may feel to us like it's even sharper than a sword."
Mom nodded. "Yes, but it's really a good kind of pain--sort of like pain we feel when we exercise our muscles. It's good for us," she said.
"Guys used to fight battles with swords, so I guess we use the Bible when we fight against sin," said Isaac.
"And when we talk to other people about Jesus," Liz suggested.
"Good," Dad approved. "When we do that, it's helpful to share what God says because His Word will always accomplish what He sends it forth to do. Any other ideas?"
"It isn't always painful," said Mom. "I'm comforted and encouraged when I remember God's many promises."
Dad nodded. "Let's all be sure to use our swords every day," he said.
HOW ABOUT YOU?
Are you using your sword—your Bible? Open your Bible and read it daily. Think about what God says and how it applies to your life. Is He reminding you to trust Him through a difficult situation? Is He encouraging you to be helpful at home? To resist a certain sin? To invite someone to Sunday school? Is He assuring you that He will always be with you? You’ll find He gives you everything you need to live for Him, to defend yourself against temptation, and to win others to Jesus.
TODAY'S KEY VERSE: Hebrews 4:12 (KJV)
The word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword.