Power Tools, Joy and Image Bearing

Rich, His SoniCrafter, the Log. July, 2011.
Because He Did, We Can 
I came home from work one evening to find my husband immersed in a project. He’d commandeered the table on our deck and was busily sanding at a chunk of oak, using the Rockwell SoniCrafter I’d given him last Christmas. Apparently he’d been at work for a while, as small drifts of sawdust gathered on the table and deck.
We’re rich in oak around here since one of our giant trees uprooted last December. We’re offering it free to good homes, but no takers have emerged.  Rich has told me that he hopes to find a woodcarver, a miller, a furniture-maker, to use the wood, rather than see it all go up, branch by branch, in smoke.

So I wasn’t surprised to find him sanding down a log, after he’d stripped away its rugged bark, exposing the naked wood.

“Whatcha making?” I asked him, as I poured myself a ginger ale.

“I dunno,” he told me, setting down his sander. “At first I thought maybe a seat for a bench, but….” his voice drifted. “Did you know that a cubic foot of this wood weighs 69 pounds? I looked it up.” 
And so, for the next several evenings, the music of Rich’s sander greeted my ear as I arrived home each evening. “Feel this,” he’d say, guiding my hand to the smoothening wood. I could hear his pleasure as the late day sun set his face, the wood, the sander aglow on our deck.

My pragmatic heart would prod me again to ask, “Any idea what you’ll do with it?”

And he would smile, and shake his head, and return to his sanding. 

I finally recognized my husband’s engagement with the log. 

He’s creating for the joy of creating. Satisfaction flows from looking back on a created thing and seeing that it is good.

I struggle with the concept that I bear God’s image. How can that be? How can broken, petty, prideful, sinful me reflect my King? It’s easier to see it in other people. 

I see His image in my husband, subduing that log, making it smooth and beautiful, because he can. We are but an adumbration, but the image is there.
It is very good.

 26 Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” 29 Then God said, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you; 30 and to every beast of the earth and to every bird of the sky and to every thing that moves on the earth which has life, I have given every green plant for food”; and it was so. 31 God saw all that He had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.
Genesis 1:26-31 (NASB)

I’m linking with Laura Boggess at The Wellspring for Playdates with God. Won’t you hop over to her site and have a look?


  1. OH, Sheila, I think you should link this up to our book club post today over at the High Calling too. This call to create…it is pulling me at the seams! Luci Shaw's book is stirring me so deep. I'm finding it difficult to write…wanting to do what your good husband is doing here–run my hands over something and touch God. Lately it's been in the garden, but this restlessness Luci has awakened is driving me to other places too.

    Isn't God good? He never leaves us alone. Just keeps growing and shaping us.

  2. He is SO good, Laura…He never gives up on us, does He?

    I know that urge to make something. It drives me to the kitchen, to my beads, sometimes to the keyboard.

    Thank you for the suggestion. I will post there.

  3. This just gave me joy–imagining the music of the sander, imagining you delighting in watching your husband work. I'm thinking about creation today, too.

  4. There is such joy in creation. There is something innate that makes our heart sing when we put to task the vision God instills within us

  5. I can hear the angels ask God, "what are you creating?" And he softly and gently replies, "I am not finished with her yet."

    Those rough edges do hurt a bit as he uses his sander and we submit to his touch, because he is making us beautiful.

  6. Sandra Heska King

    "And he would smile, and shake his head, and return to his sanding."

    And he continues his smoothing.

    So much in this, Sheila.

    And He takes so much joy in us as He continues to smooth.

  7. Charity Singleton

    Creating for the joy of creating. YES! That's what we do sometimes, isn't it? No one sees it, no one reads it, no one uses it. Yet create we must!

  8. This is so dear. I just love the way you gently honor your husband and allow him to enjoy creating. Like a little kid, I can't wait to see what comes of it… abstract or not. I hope you post a follow up pic!

  9. Nancy, David,
    Thanks for joining me in the joy of it.

    Thanks for seeing. You're so good at that 🙂

    Yes, the joy is in the creating itself, isn't it? And so we do.

    Thanks. I do believe it's done, just as it is. Sanded smooth.