I'm a Ham Radio operator. My callsign is KDØETE. I hold a General Class license, issued to me by the FCC. I've slowly been studying to be able to take the test for the top level license, Extra Class. I enjoy building ham radios from kits, building my own antennas and having a "go kit" ready for emergency situations where my services would be needed for emergency communications. I can have a ham station set up in 15 to 30 minutes and ready to provide communication options as needed. I take pride exercising and practicing my skills, kit building abilities and furthering my training. I feel good about what I've accomplished when I make a distant contact with someone in England, Italy or Guatemala with equipment I've made.
I'm also a hobbyist woodworker. I have a small shop set up in my garage. My wife's father and I put in the floor in the kitchen in our old house. I built my own air system for my air nailers and for filling up flat tires in my garage. I've build numerous items for around the house. I'm currently working on a new folding worktable on locking caster wheels so that I can build a cradle for our coming third child (my wife is due on January 8th, 2012) who will be staying in our room until Baby H gets a little older. I take pride in my abilities. I like to make my projects look nice. I enjoy pushing my skills and learning new techniques to better round out my handyman/woodworking skills. I feel good about what I've accomplished when I look at my finished pieces.
But what about vertically? What about my spiritual life? Like with Ham Radio and my woodworking, I study. I learn. I try to put new concepts and lessons learned into practice. Some things that used to be a temptation for me no longer are. Some days I do a really great job of being a husband, father, neighbor, parishioner. But do I deserve the credit for that? Was it that I tried really really hard and accomplished my goal spiritually? Was I able to finally conquer that sin that has caused me so much grief and strife by believing in myself and my abilities and just really applying myself? Am I finally making headway when I succeed? Do I deserve the credit for that as well? By no means!
All credit goes to Christ. He redeems me. He justifies me. He sanctifies me. He atones for me. He intercedes for me. He strengthens me. He comforts me. He leads me. There is no good in me that is not of Christ. Apart from Him, what am I? Lost and condemned. Apart from Him, what am I capable of? Only sin. If I am a good husband, it is only because of Christ. If I am a loving father, it is only because of Christ. If I am a courteous neighbor it is only because of Christ. Any spiritual accomplishment is because of Christ. If I have any value, it is only because of Christ. To Christ belongs the credit. And when it boils right down to, my abilities in Ham Radio and woodworking are because of Christ as well. To Christ belongs the credit.
Soli Deo Gloria