A Keen Edge

Over the past three years I have had the opportunity to work with my twin sons in Cub Scouts.
Recently, at Scout Leaders? training, I was reminded of the importance of a good knife for productive work. A sharp blade cuts clean and makes work straightforward, while a dull edge makes work awkward and cuts rough.
The quality of a knife depends both on the temper of the steel and on the form given the edge. As Benjamin Franklin observed in Poor Richard?s Almanac: ?There was never a good knife made of bad steel.? If care is not taken in the formation of the blade, no amount of whetting will bring quality to the edge.
Character Matters
In the same way the work of the various programs of the Boy Scouts seeks to develop character as boys become men. Character is like the steel of the blade, the underlying feature that determines its quality.
Given good character, a young man becomes a useful part of society ? his abilities honed to a keen edge of effectiveness because of the underlying strength of the stuff of which he is made.
An Investment for Eternity
As notable as the work of scouting is, the work of the church is even more important. We are responsible for teaching the gospel to the boys and girls God has placed in our care. This training is our task as parents, and as Christians. We owe our youths the opportunity to grow into the men and women they can be in Christ.
As the wise man counsels: ?Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.? Proverbs 22:6 (ESV) The children we touch with the truth of Christ are a blessing now and forever, not merely effective citizens of a human republic but productive citizens of the eternal kingdom.

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