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"Comedy has to be based on truth. You take the truth and you put a little curlicue at the end."

Sid Caesar

Welcome to It's better with BACON!

I hope you enjoy my daily comments on all things food, cooking, cycling, and life in general. My goal is to be informative and even insightful on occasion. But mostly, I hope you find it brings a grin to your face!

18 Dec Posted by in Living | Comments

Heat, moisture, and the right amount of pressure

A few days ago I spent a few hours in my good friend, Rob Whiting’s garage. I was there to steam some wood to begin the process of making snow shoes. My son’s scout leader did this when he was a kid and he’s paying it forward. I’m doing this because Nicholas is building a set too, so we can traipse across the tundra together.

Rob built a wood steamer by hand. Make no mistake, he’s very handy. In fact, I love it when he borrows something from me because he always things better than he found them. As you can see by the image below, he used a turkey fryer full of water, modified the lid to accept a hose and attached the whole thing to the box he build and sealed with silicone.

wood steamer

Pretty ingenious – and it worked great. The garage was warm and humid. It reminded me of golfing in Florida a few months back. Anyway, while I have a lot of experience with woodworking, I’ve never steamed any wood before. Once the wood was to temperature and had enough moisture content, we applied just the right amount of pressure to slowly bend the wood to fit in the jig. Then we tightened it with clamps and let the wood cool. Its new shape happened in just a few minutes.

snow shoe in jig

As I thought about this process, I’m amazed at what a little heat, moisture, and ingenuity can do, as the proper molding takes place. I think the Lord works in much the same way. If we never are under pressure with some heat applied, it is difficult to for us to bend, to change. Our trials are the heat, the tender mercies and promptings of the Spirit are the moisture that allows us to change for the better. Like the wood, we change much quicker when the heat and moisture are applied. Fortunately we have the Gospel as the mold to make into someone the Lord had in mind all along – a useful tool. While being in life’s steam box may not seem fun at times, the results are well worth the journey.