I have always been a maker. My earliest memories of “making” was in the first house I remember living in. I was four or five years old and had received both a box of Lego, which are pretty small building blocks, and Flintstone foam building blocks, which were big enough to create a boy-sized shelter. While the Lego lasted (and is still part of my collection…) the foam blocks were too soft to survive physically, but they will forever remain in my heart.
In my next home Lego and Meccano (a steel building set that used nuts and bolts together) were the order of the day, until I discovered plastic model kits. Thanks to those kits I was able to own everything from a wee VW Beetle to a massive Ford Freightliner 18-wheeler. Heady times indeed for a boy who could barely reach the pedals of a real motor vehicle.
Thanks to my Dad’s skills and interests, I learned to take and print Black and White photos, basic home renovation skills, simple automobile mechanics and got into electronics, as well as woodworking. Over time I bought my own woodworking equipment along with other tools that have allowed me to build numerous pieces of furniture, machines and models of all kinds.
In addition to these physical creations, I also learned to make music, write opinion pieces and even compose music and lyrics. Listing all these things makes me think I can’t stick to one thing for very long, but I suppose that’s what happens when you’re curious about everything. As I said, I have always been a maker, and will keep on making things for the rest of my life.
One skill I lack, however. I am not a creator. I write non-fiction because I don’t have the creative mind to create interesting characters, fantastic settings or tightly woven plot lines. The furniture and the electronic projects I built were always based on someone else’s designs. Other than being able to compose original melodies, I don’t really have an inventive bone in my body. I may be able to connect ideas that will lead to an interesting message or a slightly different perspective but I can’t write an original story from scratch.
I don’t mind being a maker rather than a creator. It gives me all the more appreciation for those imaginative geniuses that think of a new design for a coffee table or lead us into fantastic new worlds with the stories they create. I also don’t mind that I’m not a great cook, can’t sew and have no interest in gardening, other than trying to make my yard look somewhat acceptable. Each of us has our own unique gifts, and with those gifts we reflect our Creator.
We were all imagined and made by God; each of our talents and skills reflects part of God’s image. Whether you are a maker or creator, caregiver or entertainer, whatever you do that moves and fulfills you, you are a physical expression of our Creator-God. What’s more, as you use your gifts, you make God’s creative genius visible and tangible in your own unique way.