Tag Archives: heirlooms

Ladder-tude Adjustment

Despite my best Damage Control efforts, stuff wears out and breaks. Including me.

To avoid any further injury, I’d been mostly indoors, reading/studying in new spots around the cottage. One week I’d been admiring the collection of burl carvings that hang a good 12 feet up on the kitchen side of the loft wall.

Okay, not exactly admiring.

Morning light was illumining THE CRUD gathering on the carvings, the wall and the ceiling fan. Naturally I’d been obsessing over the layers of soot, dust, cobwebs and who-knows-what accumulated on the art and the portion of the wall. Forget dust bunnies, we’re talking gape-mouthed gargoyles.

For me this far exceeded water torture. I won’t bore you with the list of friends who insisted I not clean the heirloom masterpieces myself, but to wait till they could help me.

That. Never. Happened.

Initially I was very okay with the sensible suggestion. Unlike in my younger years (when I bounced quite admirably), I’ve developed a healthy respect of heights. I am now fearful cautious to avoid falls or other miscellaneous injuries at all due cost.

So, several times this week I literally prayed for somebody to pop by with a ten-foot ladder and nothing better to do than help me banish the unruly gray fuzziness hanging over my head. It didn’t happen then either.

Once convinced the dust wasn’t moving any time soon, I returned to the day’s Bible reading.

Hmmm… Numbers 13 took me to Israel at the outskirts of Canaan. Most of the scouts said the valley was indeed great, but they seemed like grasshoppers to the giant people there who would surely destroy them. But Joshua and Caleb urged them to take the Promised Land as God told them to do.*

Trust God. Hmmm… I needed to stop being a ‘fraidy cat.

I wrapped up my Bible time thanking God for the journey that brought me here and I thought about the different challenges along the way.

At no point had God NOT provided for me. During the journey here He led me to take on situations and circumstances I hadn’t before imagined. And here I sit, bothered by dust because I’m reluctant to tackle heights.

Hearing no objection from heaven, I drug a ladder from the barn. That took ten minutes.

Going up and down the rungs was not as easy as I remember. I’m sure initially my shaky legs made the ups and downs of it all far more dramatic. Even so, several hours, entirely unharmed or otherwise marked, and a good, slow workout later, I felt not only empowered, but redeemed. I’d evicted every semblance of the dust dragons.

Disclaimer: No carving or other art was harmed in the making of this story.

“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”

2 Corinthians 12:9

*Numbers 13:16 – 14:38

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Filed under A Door Ajar

Experience

grandpas-hatchet

Helper, Captain Morgan at the helm.

Captain Morgan at the helm.

I laid awake most of the night, tormented over breaking Cole’s old Coleman hatchet. Yeah, the one I hammered into a wet, rather green log until the head broke – right at the notch (so handy for pulling nails from construction wood).

 

The upset tortured me while I should have been sleeping. All. Week. Long.

Cole was completely cool about it. I systematically timed telling him I’d broken the hatchet he’d given me on our first cold morning here. The moment arrived as I presented him with a fine, shiny-new, Estwick Sportsman hatchet with all the bells and whistles.

I rarely get to give Cole anything of value. I was initially giddy until I jokingly said the words, “the hatchet you gave me… …worn out…” and “…broke.” Instantly his entire demeanor changed dramatically – merriment abandoned my presentation. His words, “…my grand pa’s hatchet… he’d used it for years…” shot the loss and hurt straight through me too.

I get it: My siblings and I inherited very few, mostly valueless, common things from our parents. Those humble heirlooms are precious to each of us. Destroying something invaluable from Cole sickened me.

After weeping privately I texted him “I’ll make it right somehow,” (forgetting he was working in town). I’ll never forget his immediate reply: “Oh stop it-only made me sad for a min-it has done its job for a long time.” And then moments later he texted he’d gotten more wood to get me through while the grove is still snowed under.

“We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment…” *

While I may annoy Cole with more words than he prefers, I learn from him. Things like his grandfather – who cut wood into his nineties with that old model, Coleman hatchet are important to us both. Had I known, I would have retired the Coleman and bought the new ones immediately.

The experience stung us both, but to me it revealed the character beneath Cole’s cast iron veneer. He is a treasure indeed. I hope for more, far less painful lessons.

“Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.” Matthew 6:21 (NLT)

*Romans 5:3-5 (NLT)

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Filed under Notes from the Apex