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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Overcoming the Fear of the Hammer

I had always been intimidated by the thought of hammering my own pieces of jewelry. I was worried that it wouldn’t come out right or that I wouldn’t enjoy it, or it would be too hard to do.  I was just content to buy pre-made pieces from other artisans, local stores, or online. Then last year, I met a young woman named Jonah.  After conversing with her for about 10 minutes or so, I decided to have a go at it.

I bought a small Ball - Peen hammer at a local craft store and some cheap metal wire. At first, it was a bit daunting. I had the hammer and wire, now what?! It took me about a week before I actually used it.  The solid concrete floor of my den became my anvil. The cheap wire had a copper core that showed through the steel coating giving my first pieces a very unique look. They were strange looking things, but I was making things none the less. The more I became comfortable, the higher grade wire and metal blanks I began to work with. Finally, I invested in a steel bench block. The very thing I had been intimidated by is now a great source of stress relief. It took a bit of faith in myself to overcome my fears.

Just because something seems hard doesn’t mean that it isn’t worth having a go at it. A lot of times we feel that we can’t do or we aren’t capable.  We are.  We have this tainted view of life that if we do something wrong, we will be a total failure. Not true. Philippians 4:13 says in the Amplified, “I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency]”.
We have a tainted view of God as this angry deity who has a massive hammer over us waiting for us to mess up so he can smash us flat.  Again, not so. Romans 5:8 in the Amplified says, “But God shows and clearly proves His [own] love for us by the fact that while we were still sinners, Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One) died for us.”  His hammer is just and swift yes, but it is also gentle. True, He does chastens those He loves (Hebrews 12:6). But out of His love for us, He is gentle and brings healing along with His chastenings.

The hammer we fear may be the judgment we feel others have towards us.  Be of good cheer, for who can be against us if God be for us (Romans 8:31)?  Paul said he felt it a small thing to be judged of others (1 Corinthians 4:3). And so should we.  Yes, our failures are the things that people seem to dwell on and point out to us. Our failures do not define us. It is how we recover from our failures that defines us. If we keep going learning from our mistakes, it make us stronger.  If we allow our mistakes to cripple us and hold us back, then we have just proved all of the nay-sayers right.
We must be willing to fail in order to succeed.

Be Blessed.