Posted: June 22, 2012 in STORY
Tags: , ,

An elderly carpenter was ready to retire. He told his employercontractor

of his plans to leave the house building business and live a

more leisurely life with his wife enjoying his extended family. He

would miss the pay cheque, but he needed to retire. They could get


The contractor was sorry to see his good worker go and asked if he

could build just one more house as a personal favour. The carpenter

said yes, but in time it was easy to see that his heart was not in his

work. He resorted to shoddy workmanship and used inferior

materials. It was an unfortunate way to end his career.

When the carpenter finished his work and the builder came to inspect

the house, the contractor handed the front-door key to the carpenter.

“This is your house,” he said, “my gift to you.”

What a shock! What a shame! If he had only known he was building

his own house, he would have done it all so differently. Now he had to

live in the home he had built none too well.

So it is with us. We build our lives in a distracted way, reacting rather

than acting, willing to put up less than the best. At important points we

do not give the job our best effort. Then with a shock we look at the

situation we have created and find that we are now living in the house

we have built. If we had realized, we would have done it differently.

Think of yourself as the carpenter. Think about your house. Each day

you hammer a nail, place a board, or erect a wall. Build wisely. It is

the only life you will ever build. Even if you live it for only one day

more, that day deserves to be lived graciously and with dignity. The

plaque on the wall says, “Life is a do-it-yourself project.”


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