A lesson from a garden box

Chance and I built a couple of raised garden boxes last weekend. I like to think I’ve mastered the radial arm saw, and I’ve gotten slightly better at drilling holes, but for whatever reason, I cannot figure out how to put in a screw with an impact gun. (I think that’s what those are called anyway.)


I know what you’re supposed to do: apply the right amount of pressure, press the button steadily at an appropriate speed, and keep the impact straight in line with the screw. But my hands could do none of those things simultaneously. Or individually, honestly.


Instead, I’d just spin the drill bit right off the screw, which would lead to hitting the wood or stripping the screw. I did more destruction than construction when the impact was in my hands, and so, after many, many attempts to be patient with me, Chance took it from me and said, “I can’t watch this anymore.”


I don’t blame him.

Other than that though, our project went pretty smoothly. I didn’t break anything or dill holes in the wrong spot. I’m getting the hang of this. There’s just one thing…


Chance is years ahead of me in experience when it comes to building stuff. He works so much faster and more efficiently than I can, so while I’m on step one, he’s waiting for me on step seven. And while he’s looking back waiting for me to catch up, he assumes I’m going to know what to do. Or if he gives me instructions, they sometimes get lost in translation from construction words to Calli words.

But eventually we get back on the same page and get the job done and we stand back and admire our work all proud like. And then we go get some ice cream.

After we got done with these garden boxes, I told him, “You know, working with you is kind of like working with God.”

“I know, I’m pretty awesome,” he joked. “But what do you mean?”


God is so many steps ahead of me and He’s got a plan I don’t understand. And sometimes it seems like He just expects me to know what to do next, or if He does subtly tell me what the plan is, it gets lost in translation.


But with lots of patience and many attempts to teach me, I get it eventually and I can get to work. Or, if like in the case of the impact gun, we just throw out that plan and move on to a different one. Either way, eventually God guides me along well enough to get the job done, and when we get to that point, it’s pretty fun and rewarding.


It just takes a lot of trust and patience to get there. But don’t worry, if God can give Chance enough patience to work with me, He’s got plenty of patience for anyone. Just stick with it. The reward will be worth it.

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© 2020 by Calli Townsend.