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The Work of a Master

** Guest post by our own production supervisor Jane Mellema **

Chunks of wood shavings were shoved into the corner of my room. It was a disaster. I was left to clean up the evidence of hours of labor and sweat. I marveled at the large curled wood shavings, reminiscing to the scent of saw dust that would fill our basement when my dad would do woodworking projects. Yet there was a key difference here. This was not sawdust left behind from an electric power saw, smoothly and effortlessly slicing through wood. These were chunks of wood. Well-calloused hands had gripped chisels, wedges, a hammer, and a little rusty hand saw. No electricity involved. My window screens had all been made by hand.

True, my screens were not complete the day that I had hoped I could move into my apartment, and I had been frustrated. However, as the day wore on, I was able to observe the process. Thankfulness replaced frustration. If I had arrived to the finished project, I would not have seen the work that went into cutting each sheet of screen and chiseling out each piece of wood. Each latch was carefully screwed into its respective place. Coming from a culture where windows and screens are purchased from a large department store, ready-made and uniform, this struck me as an incredible thing. 

The screens on my window are not just screens. They are the artistry and handiwork of a carpenter named Hanuman. Every time I open a screen, I am reminded of his kindness and hard work. I think of his family and the importance that this work has in providing for their daily needs. These pieces of handiwork reveal a bit of the character and life of their designer.

Observing the process of screen making was by far superior to arriving to the finished product!  Is the act of creating just as unique as the finished product? 

Photo credit: Jane Mellema

1 comment

  • Sue

    Thanks for reminding us that often times the journey is more significant than the destination.

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