Trading In Your Tools

Sometimes we find our self in the middle years of our lives with an emerging new internal job description. The job description some of us have always had is, “Survive by staying small and invisible.” The tools we’ve mastered are variations of hammers—self-destruction hammers, growth-destruction hammers, hammers for breaking any light that shines on us or within us.  

One day, as we sense there is a new job calling us, we discover our tools are the wrong tools for this new work. 

Imagine you are an artist. I hire you to help me on a big art project and you show up with your paint brushes and that’s perfect because the job is a mural. Two weeks later I hire you again and you show up with your brushes and find a huge block of marble to be carved. You are still a great artist, but the job changed so you need a different set of tools. 

Remember, your old job in life was self-preservation through remaining invisible/too small to see. Growth is the enemy and the tools are growth destruction tools that challenge any chance of growth into visibility. The tools work and you were trained well and you’re a great worker. 

When you discover there is a new job, “To become visible and be a model of self love,” ask your Employer what to do. Listen closely and you’re likely to hear “I’m the Employer and I say the job changed and we need to get you a new set of tools. Here they are. If you need any other tools, tell me. If you have any other tools that don’t work anymore, bring those as well and we’ll find some tools better suited to your current life.”

The tools we are skilled with don’t become bad or defective tools, they simply don’t work for us anymore. In those moments, we might pray

“Divine, my old tools don’t work in my new job. Please take them. Please give me the right tools so I can shine in my new job. Thank you.”

I’ve written a new book on prayer with BJ GALLAGHER and you can find it here: