Building Your Own House

   An elderly carpenter was ready to retire. He told his employer-contractor 
of his plans to leave the house-building business and live a more leisurely 
life with his wife enjoying his extended family. He would miss the paycheck, 
but he needed to retire. They could get by.
   The contractor was sorry to see his good worker go and asked if he could 
build just one more house as a personal favor.
   The carpenter said yes, but in time it was easy to see that his heart was 
not in his work. He resorted to shoddy workmanship and used inferior 
materials. It was an unfortunate way to end a dedicated career.
   When the carpenter finished his work the employer came to inspect the 
house. He handed the front-door key to the carpenter.
   "This is your house," he said, "my gift to you."  The carpenter was 
shocked! What a shame! If he had only known he was building his own house, he  would have done it all so differently.
   So it is with us. We build our lives, a day at a time, often putting less 
than our best into the building. Then with a shock we realize we have to live 
in the house we have built. If we could do it over, we'd do it much 
differently. But we cannot go back. 
   You are the carpenter. Each day you hammer a nail, place a board, or erect a wall.  "Life is a do-it-yourself project," Your attitudes and the choices 
you make today, build the "house" you live in tomorrow. Build wisely!

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