Thursday, July 17, 2008

Working Together

We have been needing a new file cabinet for a long time. The rails in our Wal-Mart cabinet broke over a year ago, and it only remains standing in our living room as a place to keep the diaper bag out of reach, while the flimsy drawers hold the children's outside toys and some miscellaneous picture frames. After months of waiting and virtual shopping, I finally ordered a simple wooden model from Office Max, which arrived on Monday. Don came home from work and, instead of stepping around the box on his way to the couch as I expected, began to assemble our new cabinet right away. What a blessing it is to have a husband who knows how to use tools - and read directions! Of course, our two little helpers were nearly bursting with excitement when they saw Daddy get out his tool box. They love to "help" Daddy with any of the occasional home improvement projects he takes on. He armed them each with their own small screwdriver, and the construction - or destruction - began.

As he matched up numerous boards and screws, Don managed to stay patient with the future builders, despite repeated inattention to his instructions regarding the tools and a few near sabotages of the entire project. If you have ever attempted to complete a project with small children underfoot, you understand the significance of this. At one point, I began to wonder why he was letting them help at all, especially since Hayden seemed determine to injure himself with one of the forbidden tools, but they were having so much fun working together with their dad that I had no desire to intervene.

Finally, in order to keep them busy, he gave the children the important task of screwing together the Styrofoam inserts that came in the package. Translation: he provided tools for them to grind Styrofoam into powder and then sprinkle the confetti all over the living room, creating a picturesque wintry setting for the new furniture. I remained uninvolved as I was busy in the kitchen, scrubbing out the Crock Pot from the meal I mentioned last time (I had to cook it eventually, you know.) Here you can see the delighted little helpers in the aftermath of the snowstorm:

On the way home from church last Sunday, Don posed the question, "Why do you think God uses people?" People always mess up, they fail, they sin, and if they do manage to get something right, they take the credit for themselves. Why does God let us help with His heavenly projects at all? He could speak a word, and everything would happen according to His perfect will. Instead, He gives us the tools and directions and expects us to obey. He gives us the chance to be part of his Divine plan when we seek His will in prayer, study, and action. Reflecting on Monday's events, I can't help but think that more important than any mess we create in our vain attempts at doing good deeds, more important even than the visible finished product, is spending quality time with our Father. He is patient with us, inviting us to come alongside Him and help with His work. What an honor to be chosen for such a project!

For we are God's fellow workers...
1 Corinthians 3:9a

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