Sunday, April 2, 2017

The Tinkerer

Tinker - an interesting word, at least for me. Maybe it's because I can relate to it since I remember my father saying that word at lot, especially when he was trying to fix something. For example, if he was attempting to get an old clock working, he would say he was going to tinker with it a while. This usually meant that he didn't really expect to get it actually working, unless success happened by chance, or through perseverance of several tinkering episodes. Nonetheless, he would continue to tinker with various things. To my dad's credit, not everyone can tinker, it takes perseverance and patience, and he was a pro at it.

Another word my dad used a lot, especially when he went outside in the garage to see what he could get into, was the verb "putter around". He would say something like, "I'm going out to putter around for a while". That usually meant doing little things of little consequence. It was usually an act of randomly performing small, unplanned mediocre tasks, in no particular order.

A third word he used a lot was pretnear. Actually, it's more of a phrase. My dad would say something like, "He pretnear got the job done!" This word, I suppose, is an abbreviation for the phrase "pretty near", meaning almost.

I don't know if these words are specific to the area I grew up in (south central N.Y. state), or the time period I grew up in. But regardless, I look back at them with humor and nostalgia.

You are probably wondering how in the world those three words - (tinker - putter around - and pretnear) -  relate to anything spiritual. Well, they actually do. They apply to someone who takes the Bible, God's word, with a lackluster attitude. The word lackluster means exactly what it sounds like - lacking luster. In other words, an attitude lacking conviction or vitality. Here's how to apply those three words to Bible reading, in just one (run-on) sentence....

Don't tinker with God's Word like you don't really expect to get anything out of it, or
putter around in it with no real direction, and don't ever say, "I pretnear was persuaded to get serious about following the Way, the Truth, and the Life!

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