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Christian Living spiritual growth

One Piece at a Time

The singer Johnny Cash has a humorous song that’s a classic “Country boy outsmarts the establishment” story.

According to the song, in 1949 a young man from Kentucky takes a job on an assembly line in Detroit, Michigan building Cadillacs. He is in awe of the beautiful sedans, but is saddened by the fact that he can’t afford one.

One day, he comes up with a daring plan which is revealed in the chorus: 🎶 “I’ll get it one piece at a time, and it won’t cost me a dime.”🎶 Slowly, over the next twenty-odd years, the man sneaks out Cadillac parts–a few at a time–until he has a whole car.

Finally, when he’s ready to retire, he and his friends from the auto plant decide to assemble the one-of-a-kind Caddy. However, they quickly discover that many of the parts, from different models years, don’t fit together.

So they drill new holes for bolts and use an adapter kit to make the 1973 engine work with the 1949 transmission. Soon enough the car is running and driving, but then the guys realize it has only one tail fin and three head lights!

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power if from God and not from us.

2 Corinthians 4:7 (NIV)

The other day I complained (just a wee bit) to God. 🙏 Lord, as a teenager I dedicated my life to serve You in the gospel ministry. Remember that? But 14 years later everything fell apart. Why?

Kind reader, did you ever long for a brand new spiritual “Cadillac,” only to realize you couldn’t afford one? Me too. But then God said something –the same thing He told the Apostle Paul:

My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.

2 Corinthians 12:9a (NIV)

In other words, God gives us what we need. One piece at a time. And His generosity doesn’t cost us a dime. Yet, unlike the song, we aren’t sneaking off with the unaffordable. This custom ride is a gift.

A fender here, a door there, over the course of many years walking with the Lord. Does it matter all that much if they don’t match?

Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

2 Corinthians 12:9b (NIV)

Thank you for reading. 🙏❤️ prayers and love.


Photo by carlos aranda on Unsplash

By davidsdailydose

I'm just a regular guy who was
tempted to lose all hope but did not. It was God who made the difference.

40 replies on “One Piece at a Time”

I am amazed, as well, Chris. In a way, I’m glad God doesn’t hand us the keys to a brand new Caddy. It’s better to get our grace one piece at a time. Blessings, brother. Thank you reading and commenting.

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Another great post. So often what we envision for our life is so different than God’s vision. He pieces us together for His work, revealing how he uses us for His purposes. I am amazed by how he continues to use me in ways I never thought possible.

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Me too, Gary. I believe the author and pastor, Henry Blackaby calls these holy assembly points spiritual markers. It’s encouraging to look back and see how God provided in the past, and to know He’ll do it again. Thanks, Gary!

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Thank you kindly, Betty. The past is in the past, and it wasn’t all that bad. I’m still here. 😊 Well, enough about me. I suppose we all have our regrets. It’s what we’re doing right now with our lives that matters. You are one positive gal. I love that about you!

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I appreciate the cross reference, Beth. The clothes Paul tells the Galatians to put on are similar to the custom parts He gives us at just the right time. What stuck out to me is that God just doesn’t hand us the keys to a new caddie and say, “Enjoy.” Like a good father He gives us what we need when we need it. Thank you for stopping by. God Bless!

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David, your post came as a perfect compliment to a verse I was dwelling on this morning- Galatians 3:27- “And all who have been united with Christ in baptism have put on Christ, like putting on new clothes.” Only in this case it would be receiving one piece at a time building a custom ride.

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Yes, Simply B. What a relief it is! The power behind our multi-year model lives with God is not our own. Thank you for your encouraging words. PS. Three weeks in and I’m settling in to my new hearing aids. God Bless!

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This is one of the most encouraging posts ever, and I so appreciate your words, David. Especially “In other words, God gives us what we need. One piece at a time. And His generosity doesn’t cost us a dime. Yet, unlike the song, we aren’t sneaking off with the unaffordable. This custom ride is a gift.” And when it comes to being weak, I truly believe God can’t fully use and mold us until we ARE weak. And broken. It’s then that his strength can make us who He designed us to be. What a relief, really.

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Wait a few years David and you may discover that some of these parts are from quite an older model, but by grace we keep cruising along the road! I liked Mr. Johnny too though that song I probably only heard once or twice. Blessings my brother. Have a good weekend.

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Yes indeed, brother. We are all “under construction “ via the ministry of the Holy Spirit. Thank you for sharing. How is the summer in Canada? It has been a hot one down south.

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True. The arc of our lives may have bent the same way—no matter what we did, or didn’t do. The most important thing is God promises to be with us—come what may. There have been times in my life when it was His presence alone that made the difference. Thank you for sharing. I am always grateful for your wisdom. Blessings!

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I think it can almost be terrifying to trust our lives to the Lord again, when after doing that the first time around, life was completely blown apart. I have taken comfort in knowing that those same things may have happened whether or not I had entrusted myself to God. The difference is, He was there as my strength in the broken times … and He has taken all those broken pieces and created something beautiful with them … one step at a time, and one piece at a time. Thanks for sharing, David!

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