“Needed” and “Kneaded”

From the desk of…

by Ivy Hood –

I am not a pioneer at heart. I enjoy reading stories about adventurous people who crossed stormy seas and established new homes on the prairies. But the truth is—I
would not want to trade my home for a log cabin in the prairies. I am a “nester.”
However, “nesting” is not the life to which I have been called. I have moved again and
again (17 times to be exact). In the process of those moves there have been times when I have felt that I couldn’t meet another new person. I couldn’t reach out to people once again. I felt that I had nothing left to give to people or my new assignment.
And more times than not, I didn’t feel worthy or capable of the assignment given me. Fortunately, with God’s help and the support of the wonderful people with whom I have had opportunity to serve, and the deep abiding assurance that “Just where he needs me, my Lord has placed me,” those feelings soon passed. For this “nester” it is an awesome thought that God needs me!
I have also come to realize that there is another part to this “needing” process and that’s God’s “kneading”. I was reading a story about a little boy who ran to his mother and announced, “Our play dough has died.” Sadly he held out the tin to show the mother a wad of dried-up pink concrete, unworked and exposed to air for weeks (I think the dough was “nesting”).
“You didn’t use it,” the mother told him. “Dough needs to be kneaded.”
“Like people?” he asked. “You said they need to be needed, too!”
The mother knew they weren’t using the same words, but her little boy was right. People do need to be needed…and kneaded. In the process of needing me, God has also kneaded me. He has stretched me, molded me, and continually worked to form me into a useful vessel for him. Major Colleen Marshall wrote these words, “But the Potter has fashioned a designer pot and he’s chosen me to grace it. I know it will be a tender repotting. I’ll see the Master’s hand in it. New soil, nutrients, lovingly patted in around my tangly roots. A soft bed with room to spread and grow. The Gardener watching over me.”
God needs you—each officer, soldier, volunteer—and if you allow him, he will place you just where he needs you. And be assured if you allow him he will knead you into something beautiful, fit for his use.

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