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Tough going, call me ‘Evinrude’

Several years ago, I had gotten myself into a work situation that was far beyond what I had bargained for.

I was doing backbreaking, emotionally-taxing work, with little pay; and my employer not only didn’t appreciate me, but was antagonistic toward me.

I felt a need to press on to the end for the benefit of the person I worked with, and my friends encouraged me not to quit. But, I was emotionally drained, physically exhausted and very much discouraged.

One morning at church, as I worshipped I sensed God saying, “You are like Evinrude, the little dragonfly on ‘The Rescuers.’”

As if in confirmation, the pastor’s sermon was on God giving us a new name, one only He knows.

I thought, with a grin, “Yes, my name is Evinrude and God sees me as a big bug.”

But I knew that wasn’t the message that God was trying to get through to me. After church I rented “The Rescuers.”

In the animated movie, two mice set out to rescue a little orphan girl who had been kidnapped. They use a leaf boat with a dragonfly motor, Evinrude. He pushes the boat, giving it all he’s got, making little motor boat noises. Occasionally, he pauses to pant in exhaustion.

The two mice get into a jam and need help from their friends. Evinrude bravely goes for help, dodging hungry bats. Just a few yards from the house, he hides in a glass bottle until morning. When the bat goes to sleep, he makes one last, daring dash, dives down the chimney and lands on the floor at the feet of his friends. Covered with soot, he’s stretched flat, with his tongue hanging out. His friends stand around him and one wise owl says, “You musn’t quit now, Evinrude.”

Yes, I felt like Evinrude.

Moonshine recharged Evinrude, and he led them to victory. As the two mice flew off into the sunset in their makeshift plane, the tenacious dragonfly snuggled comfortably between them.

I thought about the moonshine that recharged Evinrude. No, God wasn’t encouraging me to take up drinking.

Ephesians 5: 15-18 says, “Be very careful, then, how you live — not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.”

We all know the importance persevering to the end, but there are times when it seems we cannot go another inch. That’s when the Spirit empowers us beyond our natural strength to do the Father’s will.

I was able to finish the job, though it was one of the most unpleasant experiences of my life, and I knew what mattered was not how my employer saw me, but how God saw me.

I bought a silver charm, a dragonfly, and wear it on a chain around my neck to remind myself to not give up, and to rely on His strength, not my own.

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