Thirteen years ago, almost to the day, I wrote a short article entitled The Old Shed. Over the last few days the contents of that article have returned strongly to my mind. Recent events and some issues that I have seen highlighted make, I believe, what was said back then more relevant than ever before. I struggled against restating what I have already said in the past – but feel it is appropriate to share this today – so here is the article in its original form.
The Old Shed
“I have walked passed it numerous times over the last eleven years. It was dilapidated, disused, partly broken and partly open to the elements even the first time I saw it. Still, it provided shelter for a few disused items and the odd sheep sheltering from the wind. But no one gave it any attention – its owner long having abandoned it for a newer and larger facility nearer his farm. It was to use an “in” phrase – “not fit for purpose”. What I cannot understand is how it has stood for so long. It has not been blown away in the winter gales of intervening years – or even in the severe storms of a few weeks ago, which destroyed many a better and more substantial structure. But, year by year it sank lower and lower. At this point it is totally unusable, reduced to the ground – but it still marks the landscape.
That’s the problem with old things sometimes – they don’t go away – but instead cling on to their place and position although it is clear they are no longer – “fit for purpose”. Take Eli – a man who had served God well in his day and generation. But now he is old and stubborn. His sons are not men after the Father’s heart – in fact the very opposite. Yet Eli will not rock the boat – he’s too old for the hassle that would cause. By default he becomes disobedient to God and a disgrace to the people – yet, no doubt, they still loved and revered him in many ways. God however placed His mantle on a three-year-old child called Samuel. Eli had become yesterday’s man – and Samuel, a three year old child, was both today and tomorrow’s man – yet they lived side by side in the same “House”! It could have been a time of tension and frustration – yet there is not a hint of that in the record – for Samuel’s vision and energy was directed primarily towards the worship of God. Interestingly, Samuel, as he grew older, did not seek dialog, debate or compromise with the sons of Eli. Neither did he seek to “shore up” something God had declared bankrupt. He had heard the declaration of God on the matter – and that was enough. He held to the revelation and waited on God to act!
There is, in many a spirit throughout the Highlands today, a sense of frustration – for through the eye of the spirit they have seen the vision and heard the declaration. Yet the strain of living in the same “House” at times becomes unbearable. When, when – is the question in many a heart that longs for a new day. However, there are some who also see the new day dawning – but the sight of the old shed frustrates them! What is the answer? I believe the answer is found in the life and experience of Samuel – to focus primarily on the worship of the Father – and leave the timing to His discretion!”
After this article was written the farmer subsequently fenced off the remains of the old shed to keep his sheep away from danger! Today the shed has been removed completely. If believed in 2005 and still believe today the old shed was and is a prophetic picture or parable. I leave you to make the application.