Daily Meditation: "Longer"
Tuesday, August 18, 2020
"… [The One] who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." - Philippians 1:6
I remember when I took up woodworking after Kath and I got married. I did it out of financial necessity since there were things that needed doing and we didn’t have the money to have someone else do it. I’ll never forget the first time I turned on my table saw. It reminded me of the sounds coming out of my basement my entire childhood as my father did the same thing I was now trying to do. The sounds of the motor, the smell of the sawdust and varnish...I fell in love with the process.
I soon learned, however, that it is a skill that takes time. I can’t remember how many bad cuts I made, measurements I miscalculated, things I just...did....wrong. Woodworking is a skill that requires patience and the realization that it isn’t something you get good at overnight. But then again, name something we really do get legitimately good at overnight. Go ahead, I’ll wait…
Woodworking, playing the guitar, marriage, fatherhood, ministry; they are, all of them, a process of ongoing learning, mistake-making, and getting better over time (I hope!) My very being, according to Paul’s letter to the Philippians, is like that, too. God began a good work in me, then my parents took over, let me go, and ever since I’ve been trying to figure it out with various levels of success and more than a healthy dose of failure. Being is, after all, a lifelong process.
Yet, I know that what God began is still at work and that, one day, I might look back at my life the way I stand back and look at a cabinet I’ve finished, give it the once-over and say, “That came out pretty good.”
At least, that’s my prayer.
Patient God, grant that I continue to cultivate the good work you began in me with the ways I continue to learn to live my life so I might make the world around me a better place until, at last, my work is done.