Monday, November 1, 2010

DIY

Have I ever told you the one about how Beve tore up our bathroom and it took an entire year before we actually got to take a shower in there again?  What about the one where he tore up the kitchen floor the week two of our kids were going off to college and we had to take all of our laundry to a laundromat for longer than I care to remember?  Then there's the one where we moved into a house and the drain backed up into our basement, and we thought we could fix even that ourselves. HA!

Let's just say Beve's a DIY-er extra-ordinaire.  He really is.  Mostly because he's cut from the cloth of his father, and likes to save a buck or two any time he can.  I'd say he was cheap, but he's too good a guy to say such a pejorative thing about. 

And now that mowing season is over for the year, we're starting into the season of DIY.  First on our agenda is replacing the carpet in our TV room, which has needed it for about six years (we don't lay our own carpet--we don't have the knees or the skill for it).  But as long as we were replacing the carpet, we thought we'd lay a small tile entry-way at the door we always use.  So we chose tile, carted it home and laid it out in a fairly elaborate pattern.  Made a graph of it, then realized it wouldn't work, that the cuts would be beyond us, and time was awasting.  Then Beve did the most amazing thing:  he called a young man who did some work for one of Beve's colleagues.  And that young man, Anton, came by this morning, looked at the tile, looked at the area, asked me what we wanted and said he could do it this afternoon.  TODAY.  As I sit here, it's done.  He laid it (in a more simple diagonal grid that we'd decided would be fine), then came back later and grouted it.  Amazing.

Beve came home while Anton was working and, as is his way, began asking Anton all kinds of questions about his life.  Anton's a young married man who worked in the construction industry, made plenty of money until the economy dried things up.  Now he's just trying to make ends meet.  Before he left, Beve had him in our hall bathroom, where they talked about tile on the floor and a back-splash, and maybe even the demolition work as well.  "Maybe he could tile our kitchen floor too," Beve told me later.  "I'd like to help him out if we can."

See, it turns on a dime like that for Beve.  Anton did a very nice job for us today.  Efficient, clean and timely.  And I love how the tile looks.  And it's done.  It's done without us having to do it.  Without Beve stressing about it, agonizing over the cuts and the placement and everything else.  We got the job done that we needed to have done, and we gave a job to a young man who needs the work.  Beve is motivated by the thought that we can help Anton so we'll probably 'employ' him again soon.  I admit, my motives are slightly more mixed.  I'm thrilled that we can help this young man, but I'm also just as glad these projects might happen more quickly than at the corners of Beve's extra-ordinarily busy life.  The reality is that Beve doesn't have time to do everything that needs to be done around here.  Not with his job, his studies (he's trying to get Nationally Certified this year), his dad, his sleep (when he actually gets it).

I think, though, that God taught Beve something today.  In letting go and admitting he needed help (and might have to pay for it), God showed him a man who needs the work that Beve doesn't have the time or ability to do and the money that work will bring. Maybe not being a Do-It-Yourself-er is the best way at times.  Hmmm, in the Kingdom is there ever a time when we should do it ourselves?  Ever?


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