Working with your hands

I love assembling furniture (if we can use the term “furniture” loosely) from Ikea. I go in knowing that I’ll have to figure out how to disassemble it in three years in order to trash it, but that’s fine; I get to assemble something new. This weekend it was a wardrobe. For a guy in ministry, there’s an enjoyable novelty to actually getting to build something that has a starting and ending point, with a tangible result.

The process reminded me of Paul’s role as a tentmaker in Corinth. I wonder if Paul enjoyed the work itself, or if it was merely a means to an end (namely, food and shelter). Work (whether it is carpentry or tentmaking or… whatever assembling Ikea furniture is) bears a stamp of man’s productive capacity for which God has created him. Let us not corrupt what is good through an idolatry of work.

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