Seemingly insignificant things that hold millions of dollars’ worth of assets together … the menial, cotter pin. In my experience, I typically think of either the split pin or an “R” clip style cotter pin but regardless, these ‘tools’ cost pennies at the local hardware store and yet they are indispensable. There are at least 4 types of cotter pins (sometimes referred to as a cotter key) that I’m aware of. They are the:
Now you might be thinking, “What do cotter pins have to do with Thanksgiving holiday?” That is an excellent question. Cotter pins are usually two pieces of ‘wire’ that come pre-bent or can be bent to suit a specific need to hold to separate objects together. If you were to rummage through my coffee cans, bins, and boxes in my workshop, you would likely find dozens and dozens of them. They typically are taken for granted until one is needed.
So let me ask you, what things in your life hold you together that you take for granted? That is why I went back and added the first word of this post … “seemingly.” All too often we take for granted people like our spouse, our friends, our immediate family, our in-laws, our out-laws, our relationship with God, maybe our children, etc. Though we may think of them with little thought, I have found that they are the glue that typically get me through a rough patch. I would say that my friends (Jason & Kami, Richard & Arlene, Nathan & Mary, Dale & Debbie, Michael & Brittney, Sam & Kim, Donna, Greg & Bev, etc. (by the way to not show favoritism, those names were in alphabetical order by last name)) they have all, in some way, they have been the pins God has used in my disjointed life to keep me pieced together (on more than one … or ten plus, occasions). To demonstrate the diversion from which these people have gathered to be called “my friends,” all of these people are Christians, but not all are local. Some I live in the same town with, others in another state, or even in another country. Some have their doctorates in ministry and some are barely high school graduates. Some are new friends, others I’ve known for decades or all my life. They are some of the many members that make up the body of Christ. I can’t imagine where I would be if it were not for these individuals. There are others, Christopher & Saba, Matthew & Sumbal, Sarah, Galen & Kelly, etc. that could be added to this list but the point is, is that all too often the very things holding us together are the very things we take for granted because they’re always there.
This Thanksgiving season, I want to encourage you to take time to show your gratitude for those ‘cotter pins’ in your life. Tell me, I would be curious to know whom you typically take for granted. I have an idea. Leave a comment below about who you are thankful for this year, and then ‘Share’ LINK? this post with them. Then when they are done reading my portion and get to yours, they’ll be sure to see your gesture of appreciation.
Until later . . . Jonathan Watson
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