Six Screws and One Piece Left Over

This is what the Lord says—your Redeemer, who formed you in the womb: I am the Lord, who has made all things, who alone stretched out the heavens, who spread out the earth by myself” —Isaiah 44:24, NIV.

I have an issue with instruction manuals. Call it a mental block or just pure stubbornness, but as soon as I see the writing in the little booklet that comes with most things that need to be assembled these days, I know I’m not going to be able to understand. I need the pictures—those I can follow.

They tell me that men don’t read the instructions OR look at the pictures. They just figure they know how to put stuff together. I wonder what the statistics are related to how many times a job has been started without the aid of the instructions only to have to be redone, or undone, because those instructions weren’t followed.

Moving the discussion to the spiritual realm, I read today’s verse and do an “aha.” God not only wrote the instruction manual, He made the product. So it is logical to believe that when He tells us what to do with the product to “assemble” it, He must know what He’s talking about.

But how often do we ignore the Maker and the instructions and try to get to the end result on our own?

One of the things that impresses me about God is that, as a “Maker” He doesn’t restrict Himself to simply producing the item, writing an instruction manual to go with it, providing a one year warranty and then sending us on our way—and on our own. As the Redeemer, He tells us that the “warranty” never expires, that He is always there to make sure things work as they should in our lives—if we will allow Him, and if we follow the “Care” instructions in the manual.

Every part of our lives is mentioned in God’s “User Guide.” He made us, formed us in our mothers’ wombs. As the Maker, Sustainer and Redeemer of all things, He has a personal interest in how our lives develop and how well they serve the function for which He created them.

The Bible, God’s manual for success in His eyes, is a complete set of instructions. We can choose to ignore it and try to build the “product” as we think it ought to be. In the end, as the screws work loose, or we end up with pieces that don’t fit or worse yet, leftover pieces, we realize that we should have at least looked at the pictures—the examples of lives lived in harmony with God’s Word. Better yet, we should have read the Book ourselves and followed the instructions.

We still should.


  1. Super analogy - and I ADORE the title. Needed this reminder.

  2. Once I was priveleged to be giving a teaching, and something I said was this: I used to believe the saying that God would only hold you accountable for what you knew, but I don't believe that so much any more. Why? Because He's given us an instruction manual, the Bible. If we go out and buy a new thing such as VCR, we don't (normally) toss aside the instruction manual, do we? God expects us as believers to read the "manual" He's given us.


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