Lay It Down

The project is 98% done. Regular sheetrock was never intended for outdoor use. So that’s gone and there’s a gleaming white, water-resistant PVC ceiling on the porch. Had I ever installed the product before? No, but what’s that got to do with trying? Thankfully, it came out surprisingly good … but the process reminded me that I am prone to a bad work habit.

Replacing a ceiling requires a ladder and certain set of tools. You can either find a way to keep what you need nearby … or make a hundred extra trips up and down those rungs. So, picture me perched atop the ladder, squeezing a cordless drill between my knees, a pencil over one ear, a sharpie over the other, a box-cutter and a tape measure in one hand, a carpenter’s square and a piece of ceiling material in the other. Add to that montage of other accessories precariously balanced on top of the ladder’s last rung. The bad habit I revisited? Hanging on to too many tools.

I don’t see it coming. I am just trying to be efficient. But suddenly, I’m holding on to so many things I can’t work … or my labor is seriously impaired. Sometimes it even gets dangerous, like one job when I snatched to rescue my falling drill and almost punched the wood bit all the way through the palm of my hand…that left a scar.

When Sue’s around, she sees it happening before I do. She is a helpful wife and a great assistant. She’ll ask, “Would you like me to hold that?” “Would you like to set something down?” Here is the odd and embarrassing truth. Although I realize she’s right … I feel an instant surge of obstinacy. “NO! You’re talking to one of the greatest circus performers of all time. Juggling fifteen sharp objects while balancing on a 3 by 12-inch platform high above the earth … that’s what I was born for baby!” It just gets ridiculous. I might as well make the trips or take the help when it’s offered … because sooner or later, gravity wins. Let’s take a break from the story for some sanity …

Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall. Psalm 55:22

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. Matthew 11:28–30

It may not be physical tools, but most of us are carrying too much. It is exhausting, unproductive … and sometimes downright dangerous. When the God of the universe says, “Can I hold that for you?” Swallow your pride, trust His promises and … lay it down!