Monday, September 29, 2014

Reward for Your Work

It was a working vacation with my folks in NY for sister Amy and me following our glorious few days in Chincoteague with the wild ponies. We bought pumpkins for the folks and Amy bought two just to make her world famous pumpkin cat.
We trimmed, and raked, and gathered fallen twigs and sticks. Dad wanted the stone on his center island repainted with uniform bright letters. I worked on that while Amy organized dad's bills and brought him up to speed on the intricacies of his computer.

 Amy finished her pumpkin cat, and we were alerted that the wooden deer I had constructed last year was falling apart. With a good bit of creative carpentry (such as shoving wood chips in the intersection of deer neck and head, caulking, and judicious prayer) we were able to make the small deer remain at least temporarily upright.

However, we knew Father Winter might not be kind to the old, wobbly creation. Time for a new deer. We had approximately 12 waking hours till departure. Surely a deer would take NO time with two people. First, we assembled the pieces we needed. We discovered that the chainsaw, which would have made our work take 3 minutes, was broken. Thus, we needed to use the hand saw which increased our projected estimated time of completion to February 7, 2024. (unless Jesus returned first, which is what we began praying for.)
With the deer parts safely cut to size and carefully organized, we went to our work. Unfortunately, we were unable to find a power drill, and we wondered how we would cut the needed holes in the wood. We did find a battery operated drill. Word of warning to future deer constructionist: battery drills to cut deep holes in hard wood is the equivalent of carving Mount Rushmore with a toothpick. I'm not complaining, just stating the facts.
However, with two people working diligently, and just one brief break to go to sleep for the night, we arose and returned to our work. On hour 11 now, with one hour left till we had to depart, our feverish work reached a frenzied crescendo.
We did not let it deter us for more than the few brief moments of wailing and gnashing of teeth when we turned our deer upside right to discover his legs were uneven...and the two front legs were anatomically impossibly placed to ever hold the deer upright. (Hint: drilled holes in wood cannot be removed. Best to break off newly secured legs in holes, and drill new holes, but first, find electric drill which was in plain sight but somehow unseen when project began.)
Finally, all four legs were in place, deer leveled, and perfect antlers found and placed. Time to bring the new creation to the folks who were waiting eagerly in the living room.

We placed the new deer in front of the old deer in my parents' front yard. It didn't seem so monumental an undertaking when one stepped back and surveyed what we had accomplished.  However, it had taken us many hours, and we paid for it with backs just slightly not working the way they should the next day. But it was a labor of love. I hope when my parents look out the window and see the wobbly deers, they will not see the wood chip shims, the bent nails, the extra holes, or the gap between the body and the tail. I hope they will see what we all should see: Those you love are probably doing the best they can. Be gentle with them, and remind them often how much you love them. That was what God whispered to me as the gentle autumn mist settled on my deer.

"I think the folks liked the deer," said Amy, after we scurried to get out of the house and on the road only an hour after our intended departure time.
"I hope so," I said, "My goal is to add a whole herd one by one."


Keep your voice from weeping, and your eyes from tears; for there is a reward for your work, says the Lord. Jeremiah 31:16

Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins.1 Peter 4:8

1 comment:

  1. I want to add some spiritual message etc here, but as a co-creator of deer 2.0, I can only say, "well thanks for pointing out IN WRITING all the flaws....". Oh, and I had great fun deer-ing with you. ��������