This past month I was involved in an interesting conversation with a sibling that explored the idea of what things we inherit from our forefathers and subsequently also pass along to our children. The discussion may have overstepped some relational boundaries - it suddenly came to an abrupt end - but it did manage to start me thinking about what that inheritance is and what I wish it to look like.
We can often be convincingly tempted to whitewash history with a rosy brush, especially when aging parents are involved. And certainly there are many things that we do treasure when we look back on where we came from and what things got us to where we are today. Traditions, values, religion - all can be important areas of development that we not only cherish, but also wish for our children to assimilate. Colorful histories, memories of our parents' journeys and their stories all become important foundations to anchor our perceptions of who we are and where we are going.
But as with all things in life, there is always the detritus that must also be identified and sifted. And that's where the lines begin to fade and we soon find ourselves alienated from each other with fuzzy boundaries on a scary battlefield filled with precipices and powder kegs. Life is never simple.
So today I chose to focus on something that has tradition, history and inheritable value with complete confidence. It will get me back onto some safe, solid ground.
It's a two speed breast drill that was probably my grandfather's, although I found it in among my father's tools. I don't ever remember seeing anyone use it, and the only marking on it is "Jordan Germany." Not much history can be found about this drill, although there is some information on Jordan Tools to be found here.
Of course, it needs some work. The jaw springs are completely messed up, and it's missing its auxillary handle. But all in all it's in pretty good shape, and I'm excited to get it added to my tool inventory.
Because this is something that I think would be worth passing on to my kids. And that I hope we can agree on.