Do you feel unimportant … even walked on?


Shoeing a draft horse at the Farmers' Museum, Cooperstown, NY

Animated sequence of a race horse galloping. P...

E. Muybridge 1887 animation of galloping horse. Image via Wikipedia

In the days when battles were still fought by soldiers on horseback, a childrens’ “counting verse” taught the value of preparation:

“For want [lack] of a nail, a [horse]shoe was lost.

“For want of a shoe, a horse was lost.

“For want of a horse, a soldier was lost.

“For want of a soldier, an army was lost.

“For want of an army, a battle was lost.

“For want of a battle, a war was lost.

“And all for the want of a horseshoe nail.”

No one wants to lose battles. Everyone wants to enter the critical battles for righteousness and eternal human souls fully equipped.

So what if your job in that battle is to be the nail?

You’ll bear the weight and pressures of hooves landing furiously at a full gallop as your rider flies into battle. It’s your responsibility to hold steady the shoes that protect those hooves as they splash into icy mud, smash into rocky rills, grate across gritty sand. And the only time you’ll be noticed is if you fail.

Nobody wants to be the nail.

Everybody wants to be the soldier. Or at least the horse.

But for want of the nail, the horse, the soldier, the battle, and the war could be lost. And God wants and values that nail.

” … God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, 25 so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other.” (First Corinthians 12: 24-25)

Do you sometimes feel like you’re holding things together, entirely unnoticed? Would it change how you feel if you knew the battle depends on you — and God’s watching?

About Carlene Byron

Writer, editor, publicist, communications project manager ... I've written technology and infrastructure; I used to edit New England Church Life and The New England Christian and I've freelanced to publications ranging from Commonweal to Christianity Today. I'm now living in my hometown in Maine and am speaking about global perspectives on suicide prevention.
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2 Responses to Do you feel unimportant … even walked on?

  1. great work, keep up the great website.

  2. Cecy says:

    Thanks for this – I s’pose I can “do nail”… I’m important, too!

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