I don’t subscribe to a lot of woodworking blogs because sometimes too much information makes matters more confusing rather than clearer. That said, I have subscribed to Paul Sellers blogs, as he is one of the real online pioneers (IMO) of woodworking.
In his blog Paul identified a certain passion that I immediately related to: the concept of “It’s not what you make but how.” I don’t want to take credit for anyone else’s work so I encourage anyone reading this blog to check out his. That said, the concept of “how” over “what” is something that attracted me to woodworking and certainly separates those who are in it for the money from those in it for the joy.
Now I’m not belittling anyone trying to make a buck with their creative woodworking talents. I too own a small business and would love to see the business prosper; however this is not my “mission.” Instead, I would like my work (the art, craftsmanship and attention to detail) to stand out.
I don’t mass produce anything, instead I attempt to make everything the best quality I know how. For me, this comes from years of observing my father tackle projects. His approach was one diametrically opposed to much of our modern culture of: “use it, toss it and get another.” He preplanned, gathered information and expertise, then purchased (or used what he had available) his materials before diving in.
Here's a photo of my Dad..... his thoughtful approach to projects and resourcefulness and work ethic helped shape me, even when I was too young to realize it. Dad believed in taking care of what you have and doing things right:)
I find myself doing the same. I have a stack of lumber that I could take any piece from to start a project, but instead I look, measure, and determine what I can use that will work best with as little waste as possible. To some this may seem a waste of time, but for me the process is as important as the final product.
Observing my father was one thing, honoring my Heavenly Father is another. I want the God I serve to be seen in the product I create. This doesn’t equate to perfection but my hope is that it does reveal my true conviction. That the God of heaven and earth, revealed through His Son Jesus Christ (who, by the way was a carpenter) is evidenced by the way I live my life and the excellence reflected in my work.
Woodworking is a joy, I see it in others work and hopefully others see it in mine. That life is not about what you do or what you make but about who you are and how you live. My experience is that when I go about life working to serve the Lord, not only is He pleased but those around me are blessed.
Col 3:23 Whatever you do, do from the heart, as for the Lord and not for others.