When I lived on the farm, one of our main jobs was to build and repair fences. There were miles of barbed wire fences that were built around pastures. They were used to keep cattle in and other ranchers cattle out. We would dig holes and put round wooden posts in them. Then we would have to fill the hole back in and tamp the dirt so the post was solid. This was all done by hand as we didn’t have machine post hole diggers. Once the post was set, it was time to put the barbed wire on them. We would buy barbed wire on a reel and hook one end on a corner post and take the tractor or pickup and pull the wire along the line where the posts were. Once the wire was laid out, we had a stretcher that one end was hooked to the wire and the other end would hook around the post. We would stretch the wire tight and staple it to the posts. Most of these fences were three wire, sometimes four wire. We spent a lot of time building these fences and then they had to be kept up and sometimes repaired.
Other fences we had were chicken wire to keep the chickens in and other animals out. Around the corral we had wooden fences. At times we used electric fences. These were primarily used for a quick fix. We used small round steel posts and one strand of wire hooked to a box that would send electricity through the wire. If any animal touched it, they would get buzzed with an electric shock. It worked OK, but, was not near as strong or effective as the barbed wire fence.
In life we tend to build fences to protect ourselves and to keep others out. Are they strong and stout like the barbed wire or are they a quick fix like the electric wire? Either way, we need to be careful, so as not to fence out someone that matters. We can become isolated from friends and family, if we’re not careful. Isolation can lead to depression and then we just pull ourselves into a hole and hide from everyone and everything.
One fence I haven’t talked about is the picket fence. Picket fences can be short and pretty, medium high with not much protection, or tall with protection for our pets and kids. What ever the case, they are for the most part pretty, white, showy, and friendly. If you are going to be building fences of any kind, these are the kind to build.
If you have built fences in your life of any kind, knowing God and having an understanding of His love towards us, will help us in having and showing that same love towards others. God so loved the world He gave His only Begotten Son. The Apostle John tells us that if we don’t love our brother, we can’t love God. Are you pulled into a hole protected by barbed wire or do you have the pretty, friendly, picket fences?