First of all I want to thank Tracy for not deleting this thread! It wasn't the easiest thing for me to post but now that I did and I see the response I'd like to keep this going.
This morning blacksmithing popped in my mind and I started thinking about it. It wasn't to long ago that in order to have a small village or a town a blacksmith shop was a necessity. I did a short term mission trip in Honduras a few years ago. The fellow that was our guide pointed out the blacksmithing shop at the small village we would be staying at. Anyway the little bit that I know about blacksmith shops is there was a little mysticism that seemed to go along with it. Looking at my shop there's really not much in there other than my grinder, a drill press, heat treating oven, rotary tool, and that's about it for power tools. Now I got my forge, a couple anvils, and way more hammers than I need. My shop really isn't much without me. I'm the head machine and I don't need to be plugged in. Other than hitting the switch to turn on my bathroom exhaust fan blower and turning on the gas I'm good to go.
When I first got into bladesmithing I knew very little and the first time I fired up my coal forge I'd built from a pickup truck brake drum I found out how right I was. Forging a blade from a piece of leaf spring just wasn't going to happen that day. In fact it was a couple years later that I felt like I was starting to get the hang of it and its been a never ending learning process since I started. All this time when I first started bladesmithing I felt like there was a presence there in the shop watching me. At times I thought maybe it was the spirit of my great grandfather Steve who had his own cutlery business in 1862 watching over me. (right now you probably thinking, I always knew Ray was a little strange)
Something I have been told before more than once.
More to the present time now. Most of you know that I've been part of a men's Bible study group that's been meeting for around 6 years now and the last 3 or 4 years we have been studying the Old Testament. I do think we will finish this study shortly but to me it has been well worth the time spent doing it. When I first became a christian I knew very little about the Bible and was told we live by the New Testament but I had always wondered why the Old Testament was about 7/8's of the book. It's a history of His Chosen People. They go from being in dyer straights to up on top of the mountain. God gives Moses the 10 Commandments a couple different times and these are the rules for you to live by. Things go real good while these rules are fresh in there minds but they gradually start back sliding and they find themselves back at dyer straights. When things get real bad they turn to God again and things start to turn around once again. This cycle continues through the Old Testament over and over again till Jesus Christ makes the scene with the new plan. The thing I appreciated the most out of this study of the Old Testament is it helped me understand myself. The faults I have are no different than those that lived in the good old days.
I look at "His Chosen People" in the Old Testament as "Man, himself" in the New Testament. Instead of God choosing us you either you chose to follow "Him" or just do as you please. You make the choice.
I had mentioned earlier about "mysticism" being somewhat tied to blacksmithing. Also thinking the presence I felt being my great grandfather watching me when I first started bladesmithing. I now know the presence I was feeling in the beginning of my adventure is much higher than that of my great grandfather. God talks to us. He talks to me in my shop most all the time. I've chosen to listen this time. Read the Bible and let God talk to you.