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PROVERBS 14:4 NKJ Where no oxen are, the trough is clean; â€¨But much increase comes by the strength of an ox. 


I realize today is Valentine's Day; however, nothing in our Bible 365 reading appears to be remotely romantic or about love. Instead, we'll look at one of my favorite proverbs, which is totally unromantic. Joy will not be surprised.   In the day these proverbs were written, having an ox would be like a tractor or combine today. With an ox, you could get much more work done. Certainly, you could plow more land faster and easier. With an ox, you were more productive.   

And with an ox, you will have more messes. Messes in the feeding trough and in the stall. If you are a neat freak, an ox will be a challenge for you, so you'll have to remember what is most important to you. Pristine or productive? Less mess or less money? 


This is a verse Phillip Moore, our Executive Pastor, and I share as an inside joke. In discussing our days, we'll refer to the hard days as those we had to shovel a lot. With many staff, people, and facilities, things do not stay pristine and in perfect order. But the blessings that come outweigh the problems. So, we keep shoveling and keep smiling and thanking God for the increase.   


What are some of the things in your life that can be messy at times, but you are blessed to have them in your life.   

Side note:  If some of these messy things are relationships, do not refer to these people as the oxen of your life. Just a thought.