What Kind of Protection Do You Use?

Having worked some of my earlier years in the Natural Gas and pipeline industry, I have had the opportunity to learn about some interesting processes that most people never see.


One such process is called Cathodic Protection.  Cathodic Protection is a technique used to control corrosion of a metal surface.  This technique is commonly used to protect steel, storage tanks, water or fluid pipelines, ships, offshore oil platforms, and oil casings, as well as hundreds of applications great and small that touch your lives daily.


Cathodic Protection is accomplished by taking advantage of the natural exchange of electrochemical potential that occurs when any material comes in contact with another.  This potential is commonly measured in voltage, albeit that potential is very small.


That’s right!  There is a natural exchange of electricity when any two materials come in close proximity with one another.  When this happens with steel, and many other materials, the result is corrosion (rust).  The amount of potential flowing out of the steel determines how quickly the metal will corrode.


Stays with me now, don’t fall asleep!  I will eventually get to a point.  I promise.


The process of Cathodic Protection hinges upon what is known as a galvanic anode, otherwise known as a sacrificial anode.  These anodes are usually made up of some type of alloy; (i.e., zinc, magnesium, or aluminum).  The electrochemical potential, current capacity, and consumption rate of these alloys are much greater than steel.  In other words they have more “active” voltage (more negative electrochemical potential) than steel.


To be effective, the potential of the steel surface is polarized, or pushed, more negative by the corroding anode, thus causing the surface of the steel to have a more uniform potential, halting the corrosion reaction on the steel.


The anode is sacrificed to save the structure.


As I thought about the process of Cathodic Protection, it came to me that we as fathers could take a lesson from this.  At times when we seem to be working too hard and no one seems to notice or care; or other times when we as fathers choose to go without something we desire to provide for our child’s soccer or dance lessons or whatever is needed.  All these things and more are literal sacrifices we as fathers make to provide a surface of uniform potential for our families.


This is a basic rule of fatherhood.  If you don’t like it, too bad.  If it’s not too late don’t be a father! 


Really, do we think we are better than the greatest Father of all?


God in his infinite love for us became the anode.  In Jesus He could have become a physical King on this earth.  He could have had all He wanted, lived in the finest homes, eaten the most savory of foods, but He didn’t.  He became the lease noble of all men.  He was beaten, ridiculed, spat on, and nailed to a cross, so we could become polarized and have a uniform potential.


As Jesus was sacrificed our spiritual corrosion was halted because of the covering of His love.  Through His resurrection, we are forever sealed and through acceptance of His love we are forever protected.


The driving force of Cathodic Protection is the current flow of electrochemical potential.  Likewise the driving force of protection for our souls, and those of our family, is the never ending flow of his current of love.


Fathers stand up and be the anode for the stability of your family.  The blessings will far outweigh the discomfort.


En servicio como padre




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