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The Apricot Tree

Constant Vigilance

S. W. Kimball (Courtesy of Steve Johnson)

In my front yard the lawn had been extended under this favored tree. All other trees had been removed. The apricot tree had been pruned and one rather sharp stump of a lower limb was partly hidden in the foliage. The new lawn had done well and was ready to be mowed. Having gone around and around with the mower, I came under the tree and ran straight into the sharp end of a limb. My forehead took the bump, and I reeled and fell to the ground. As I recovered, I said to myself, “What a stupid trick! I’ll never do that again.”

Throughout the summer I moved the lawn and remembered the tree and skirted the offending limb. Then the winter came and went, and returning spring called for yard work. I had forgotten my pain. I was not vigilantly watching, and again I ran headlong into the sharp limb and took another fall. I had let down my guard. I had not fortified myself sufficiently. The pain brought me again to my senses and I now protected myself against a repetition.

In relation to sin, many people are constantly running into that sharp limb. They return again and again to make the same error. Knowing the danger point, they will still return. Others, after truly repenting and turning their lives over to the Lord, forget after a time and find themselves in pain once again.

After a while the “forehead” will not heal again. There will be a scar, the consequence of repeated actions … and in some cases, there will be very lasting pain.