Daily Worship

A prayer before splitting logs

Albert Bogle February 21, 2023 2 2
Image credit: Unsplash
Listen to this daily worship

2 Kings 6: 1-6 (NRSVA)

a Now the company of prophets said to Elisha, ‘As you see, the place where we live under your charge is too small for us. 2 Let us go to the Jordan, and let us collect logs there, one for each of us, and build a place there for us to live.’ He answered, ‘Do so.’ 3 Then one of them said, ‘Please come with your servants.’ And he answered, ‘I will.’ 4 So he went with them. When they came to the Jordan, they cut down trees. 5 But as one was felling a log, his axehead fell into the water; he cried out, ‘Alas, master! It was borrowed.’ 6 Then the man of God said, ‘Where did it fall?’ When he showed him the place, he cut off a stick, and threw it in there, and made the iron float.

Here is an interesting story. It's got a little touch of magic about it. Elisha and his team are building a retreat centre on the Jordan and as trees are being cut down an axe-head flies off from its shaft and sinks into the river.

What makes this an authentic story for me is the story continues with a voice shouting in panic “that axe was borrowed”.  Other translations have it “ that axe was prayed for”. Iron was an expensive commodity at that time, so the axe was precious. Regardless of its value Elisha comes to the rescue. He cuts a stick, throws it into the river where the axe fell in and the axe head floats to the top.

Logic is defied, and the axe head is retrieved. Perhaps the lesson we learn from all this is that God is in the business of defying logic or could it be that there are some laws of physics we have not yet discovered? Perhaps Elisha understood more about the laws of physics than we might imagine





Here I am splitting logs

With my electric log splitter

No axe required

So is electricity a miracle

or a discovery of your amazing laws of physics?


I sigh

Because I don’t always get things right,

Am I contributing to climate warming

I burn logs to keep warm

But should I have a log burner

or a gas boiler or both?

Should I drive a petrol

or an electric car or both?

Sometimes when I’m splitting logs and thinking like this

I don’t know if I’m splitting hairs


Doing the right thing is challenging

Yet, deep down I know what is required of me

To act justly

Walk humbly

With my God

But does that mean I should

Stick to walking — have no car

Does God prefer walking?


Lord here I am splitting logs

or am I splitting hairs all over again?


I’m glad you know so much more than I know

Tell me how did that axe head float?