Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Confronting Fears

When I was in junior high school I signed up for shop class (called Industrial Arts in my school.) I don't know why I chose this class. I guess I wanted to learn some things about woodworking and other practical skills. Instead I learned that I am not particularly handy with wood, metal and the tools humans use to work them. My grades for the two semesters of that class were the lowest I received in my entire academic career. I did finish all the projects, but the only thing I did particularly well at was drafting.

This failure year ago left me with a strong sense of ineptitude when it comes to building things with my own hands. I have made some improvement and will tackle small household tasks when necessary. But whenever possible, I prefer to ask someone more skilled to take care of such needs. A few months ago I needed a rabbit hutch built for my daughter's rabbits, so I found a man who could do it, drew out a plan for him and let him handle the rest. Now we need a second hutch for our expanding rabbit family. I tried to hire the same man, but he has not been available. The need has become urgent, since a third rabbit currently lives in a box indoors and has already escaped from the box once. Lacking a good alternative, I decided to undertake this project myself.

I thought I would share the process of construction with you. Because the summer temperatures are quite hot, I will only be able to work a few hours a day in the morning and/or evening. I began today.

Here is the basic model of the hutch. The one I build will follow the same pattern but the two cages will not be equally sized. One will be larger than the other.
Here is the set of tools available to me for my work. Not much to look at, but it sufficed for the building of the first cage.
Here is my work area. I'm sure you're impressed!Here are some of my materials. Wood, wire screen and, not pictured, some sheet metal.
Here are the results of today's labor. My wife asked me to wrap the boards that will form the base of the cage in sheet metal so that the rabbit's urine and feces will not corrode the wood so quickly. You will notice that the first hutch doesn't have this feature, which may affect its lifespan. The two short boards will also be wrapped and together the six pieces wrapped in sheet metal will form the base of the hutch. I hope to finish that part tomorrow and cover it with the wire mesh that will form the floor of the hutch.
I could refuse to try this work out of my fear of failure. I am by nature a perfectionist, but with the resources I have available perfection will be hard to achieve. Can I allow myself to accept doing the best I am able? It's not easy for me to confront my fear of failure, but God is slowly teaching me to not allow fear to determine what I do and don't do.

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