You have commanded us to keep thy precepts diligently. Psalm 119:3-5 KJV

My teenage granddaughter loves nail polish. Blue, neon pink, black, and purple are just a few of the colors she has piled like gum balls in a bowl on her dresser. With all that available polish it amazes me how, more often than not, the color on her nails is nearly worn off and the object of scraping and picking that drives her mother crazy.

One day her grandfather noticed her digging at a spot of silvery-grey polish. Rather than reminding her to stop he said, “Hey, that’s one of my favorite colors. Battleship grey! I didn’t know they made nail polish that color.”

She shook her head and laughed. “Oh, Grandpa, it’s not battleship grey, it’s Silver Sequin.”

“Oh,” he said, “hard to tell with so little of it showing. Looks like you’ve been at it with a needle gun but forgot the paint.”

“Needle gun?” she asked. “What’s a needle gun?”


Never ask a naval officer with a degree in engineering, technical questions without ample time to practice listening skills.

After an enlightening discussion of galvanic corrosion, chipping and painting with the aid of a needle gun were explained. Chipping is the tedious and time consuming job of removing paint and areas of corrosion from a steel ship. Chipping is done one small area at a time using a compressed air device called a needle gun. The “needles” are really very fine chisels. Afterward, protective coats of primer are followed by battleship gray paint.

When schedules permit, ships enter dry dock where the entire vessel is stripped and repainted. In the meantime, diligent chipping and painting are a must. Likewise, when my schedule permits, I can attend Christian conferences or retreats. These are special times where I am lifted from the rushing flow of life and refreshed in ways that deeply restore my soul.

In the meantime, diligently chipping away the rust of procrastination to pray and study God’s word and the corrosion of materialism and negative influences that can lead me away from God, are a must. Daily putting on the whole armor of God is my final coat of protection.

Just as shipboard inspections reveal areas needing attention, as we pray, God will reveal areas in our lives in need of chipping and painting. Let God repaint you.

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