The Lumberjack

There once was a lumberjack who was quite proficient in chopping down trees. He was the best in his profession and made it his duty to let everyone know of his moxie by parading his coveted axe over his shoulder, and whistling a tune. He could cut down ten trees a day to every other lumberjack who could only cut down one. The lumberjack was praised for his strength and his name spread throughout the whole land. Overtime the lumberjack stood in front of a grand oak tree that needed to be removed for a new railroad. He marveled at the height of the plant, but saw it as nothing more than another obstruction.

“This shall be my greatest accomplishment,” he said to himself.

The lumberjack, spat in his hands, took his axe, and began to chop the tree; but within the first hour, the lumberjack saw that he didn’t even make a dent in the wood: it was as if he hadn’t touched it at all. The lumberjack wiped his brow, gripped his axe once again, and began striking the tree with all his might, but all of his travail proved to be futile.

“What kind of tree is this?” he said, “I have been here all day-and not even a scratch!”

The lumberjack returned to camp to talk with his boss.

“So did you get rid of that tree?” asked his boss.
“It is a great tree,” said the lumberjack, “I spent all day at it, but it would not fall.”
“That’s not like you; no tree has ever withstood your axe once you went to work. I need that tree to come down.”
“It will fall,” said the lumberjack, boldly.

The next day was the same and so was the week after that. The great tree stood tall. The lumberjack’s boss was furious.

“It’s been over a week and that tree is standing tall. What’s wrong with you?”

The lumberjack was silent, holding his head down in embarrassment.

“Listen to me and listen well,” replied his boss, “You’re a great worker, but if you can’t do the jog, I’ll get someone who will. You have until tomorrow to bring that tree down if its not, then you’re fired.”

The lumberjack nodded his head slightly and went to his cabin to sleep. The next day he stood by the tree. He had sharpened his axe so that it could split a thread of hair. He looked at the tree with a grimace; and with a great shout, he assailed the tree furiously. The lumberjack’s axe pounded the tree with such force that the leaves fell to the ground leaving the very branches bare, yet the tree didn’t even crack.

The lumberjack continued, not taking a break; not stopping for a moment. Day went into night; the lumberjack could not believe his eyes: the tree stood tall in the moonlight. The lumberjack was so paranoid that he thought the tree was defying him to his face. In a fit of rage, the lumberjack swung his axe at the tree and in the process the axe broke in two. The lumberjack fell to his knees in exhaustion.

“Its over,” he said in sorrow, “I can’t do this.”

The lumberjack looked up to the sky; and because he was a man who knew something of God, he finally did what he should have in the first place: he talked to God about his arduous task before him.

“God, if this tree doesn’t fall by sunrise, I’m fired,” said the lumberjack, “My axe is broken and I have no time to get a new one. Help me.”

It was quiet in the forest and the lumberjack rose to his feet. He leaned up against the tree and sobbed bitterly; and suddenly, to his surprise, the tree began to uproot from the ground. The lumberjack pushed on it and the tree fell with a mighty crash. The lumberjack stood with a smile on his face, as well as tears, for he had learned a valuable lesson that night that we all must consider: with man all things are impossible, but with God all things are possible.

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