Tuesday, 3 April 2012

The Kite

We receive a little monthly publication called "Cheering Words" - it is filled with little stories, anecdotes, quotes and other useful snippets to encourage God's people.

I was reading a backdated issue from a year ago, and came across a poem by John Newton, that struck a cord in my heart.

The Kite and it's string

"Once upon a time a paper kite
Was mounted to a wondrous height,
Where, giddy with its elevation,
It thus expressed self-admiration:
'See how yon crowds of gazing people
Admire my flight above the steeple;
How would they wonder if they knew
All that a kite like me can do?
Were I but free, I'd take a flight,
And pierce the clouds beyond their sight;
But, ah! like a poor prisoner bound,
My string confines me near the ground:
I'd brave the eagle's towering wing,
Might I but fly without a string.'

It tugged and pulled, while thus it spoke,
To  break the string - at last it broke.
Deprived at once of all its stay,
In vain it tried to soar away;
Unable its own weight to bear,
It fluttered downward through the air;
Unable its own course to guide,
The winds soon plunged it in the tide.
Ah! foolish kite, thou hadst no wing,
How couldst thou fly without a string?

My heart replied, 'O Lord, I see
How much this kite resembles me!
Forgetful that by Thee I stand,
Impatient of Thy ruling hand;
how oft I've wished to break the lines
thy wisdom for my lot assigns!
How oft indulged a vain desire
For something more, or something higher!
And, but for grace and love divine,
A fall thus dreadful had been mine."
J Newton

Oh, how like my own foolish heart!  

How we can pull, and pull away from the guiding hand that God has upon our hearts.  

That we can think that our own plans must be the right ones - how we would get on so much better if we could just be free of the restraints that God, in His wisdom, has upon our life.

That OUR plans, which seem to be so wise and good, must surely be as good as the way that God is guiding us?

Surely being buffeted about, this way, and that way - thinking God is leading us one way, when, SNAP....he draws another way.  Surely THAT is not as good as the smooth and easy way that we can see for ourselves, without change and rise and fall.

Just like the kite, we think we can soar, smoothly, to higher and greater heights...

These commitments that God has placed in our life - if we could just change them - pass them onto someone else - then we could soar to great heights for the Lord?  What greater ministry opportunities we could seek, if we could free ourselves from the "strings" of family, and home?....

But, may we learn from the picture that John Newton "drew" for us, in his words from hundreds of years ago.

We cannot bear our own weight, in the winds of life.  We have no ability in ourselves to rise to any height at ALL.  It is GOD alone who maps out our course, keeping a firm hold upon the strings, to guide us, and keep us in the place where HE would have us to be.

Cut our strings, and we would fall, like the kite, down into the tide of life - sunken in the "tide" of despair, instead of where we should be, guided and controlled by GOD'S hand. 

May we be content to rise high in the winds of life, controlled by the hands of God.

 "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. 

For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts." 
Isaiah 55:8-9

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