It was a morning like any other. The little boy stood at the threshold, watching his father begin to work in the courtyard. The boy looked forward to watching his father work, knowing that his father always put his heart into the task at hand. His father was a hard-working man of integrity and faith, and though they were poor, he was content, trusting that God would always provide.
The boy stepped slowly towards his father. From the corner of his eye, the father saw him and smiled inwardly, knowing what it meant – his son was ready to begin his apprenticeship.
The boy watched as his father sawed the blocks of wood with powerful but controlled strokes. He asked if he could try and realized quickly that it was much harder than it looked. The father laughed and continued to work, measuring and cutting the wood, shaving it to smoothen the rough edges, and sanding it to remove splinters. The boy stood mesmerised, watching as the sawdust wafted through the air, glinting like gold specks in the sunlight.
He watched his father pick up the heavy pieces of wood and place them next to each other, carefully marking them and cutting notches, deciding how the pieces will fit together. It didn’t make much sense to the little boy, but he knew the final product would be beautiful. He knew because he had seen it happen before.
The father wiped the sweat from his brow, look of determination on his face. The boy recognized that it was hard work. He knew that it took a tremendous amount of effort to create a single piece of furniture.
Though it wouldn’t fetch a lot of money, the boy knew it was going to be beautiful; he knew the effort was going to be worth it.
The hardest part, the boy thought, was the hammering of nails into the wood to fix the pieces together. He shuddered at the force with the hammer hit the nail, and saw how deep into the wood they were driven.
He saw the strength it required– to raise the hammer, then strike the nails – over and over again. He felt the force it took, the sound it made, and the impact it had.
For everytime the hammer would strike the nail, he felt the dull thud in his chest, and his heart would beat faster. That mighty force was necessary if something worthy, some beautiful was to be created.
And he understood.
Deep down, he probably knew even then.
That the same kind of force would be used to hammer nails into his hands, and into his feet.
It wouldn’t be exhilarating then, it would only be agony.
Yes, it would be terrible, but it was necessary to save the world.
And yet, he accepted the pain and sorrow, because he knew it was going to be beautiful; he knew it was going to be worth it.