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The Pink Toolbelt
A Guide to Spiritual Remodeling for Women
With the walls of her family falling around her and an ever-present storm cloud of hopelessness overshadowing her, this carpenter from deep in the heart of Texas would begin the most important DIY project of her career. But this time, it was no building that would be transformed. Her very life would be slowly, but radically changed under the guiding hand of her Savior.
It is through this journey that Mary Dodd, a female carpenter following the Jewish carpenter, presents a practical guide for the everyday DIY woman in The Pink Toolbelt – Spiritual Remodeling for Women(Carpenter’s Guide Publishing, October 2017) – leading her readers to their own personal transformation to Christlikeness.
“The decision to be like Christ has touched every area of my life. Nothing has been harder to implement, yet nothing has been more rewarding,” reflects Dodd. “Because of the changes it has brought to my life, I am passionate about helping others remodel their lives according to the example we have in Christ.”
Throughout the book, Mary uses analogies from her lifelong work as a carpenter to illustrate and explain the spiritual lessons that she has learned. While some women might read The Pink Toolbelt in one sitting, it is designed to be read and used as a devotional guide. With the questions for application at the end of each chapter, the book can also serve as a great tool in group bible studies and ladies meetings. From learning to use the right tools, serving an apprenticeship, building in stormy weather, to passing final inspection, Mary develops the theme of remodeling one’s life through true discipleship with Christ.
The Pink Toolbelt is no study on the theory of spiritual transformation but is a work born out of Mary’s apprenticeship served in the workshop of the Master Carpenter – Jesus. In 70 daily readings, she will guide the reader through their very own remodeling process, enabling them to more closely match the life that Jesus intended them to live.
Mary will tell you that she was born with sawdust in her veins. From the rich, black-dirt farmlands of Minnesota, her fledgling instincts were fostered under the steady hand of her father who built the house she grew up in with her 7 brothers and sisters. When her brothers left home, she quickly became his right-hand girl, spending countless hours holding the flashlight, learning the tools of the trade, and assisting him in his next great project. As an adult, she pursued her passion as a carpenter in an industry where less than 2% of the jobs are held by women.
Today, along with her husband Tony, Mary leads Carpenter’s Guide Ministries, a non-profit dedicated to rebuilding the lives of others. They both enjoy sharing their story and the principles they have learned at conferences, seminars, retreats, and churches. In addition to The Pink Toolbelt, Mary will release her new marriage primer, Remodel Your Marriage in 2018. She also regularly shares her love for Christ and spiritual remodeling tips through her blog.
The Pink Toolbelt Spiritual Remodeling for Women by Mary Dodd
I am a carpenter. As far back as I can remember, I’ve been fascinated with anything construction-y. In fact, fresh out of high school, I joined a traveling construction crew that disassembled, moved, and then reassembled the big blue silos seen all over America’s heartland. It was hard work and great fun. Shortly after that, I got married. Before long my husband and I started our own construction business, and I joined him on many of our own construction sites. Together we have built everything from huge horse-riding arenas to massive log homes. I love building stuff—you might say I have saw- dust running through my veins.
Because I also love to write, I thought it would be a great idea to combine my two loves and write a devotional book based on construc- tion analogies. So I started this book with great energy and zeal. But after a few short months, the bottom fell out of my perfect little world when my family reached a breaking point.
My marriage had been a struggle for many years, and now one by one I had lost connection with most of my precious children. Our family barreled down the fast track toward hopelessness and destruc- tion, and try as I might, I could not put on the brakes and stop what was happening. Chaos set up camp in my heart. I felt wooden and hopeless. Sorrow, anxiety, and self-blame became my new and con- stant companions. I did not like them much.
The very day Father dropped this truth into my spirit, I decided to apply it to every single area of my life, no matter how small. That was the beginning of a radical change in me. Slowly, day by day, my life began to be transformed into the image of God’s Son. And in the process my marriage, my parenting practices, and my important relationships were transformed as well.
My thoughts, my attitudes, my actions—and the biggie, my words—were challenged in my overall effort to become like Christ. I was determined to serve like Christ, to become the least and last, and to go the extra mile—even when it was difficult, even when it was inconvenient. My decision and the resulting effort, along with the enabling power of the Holy Spirit, had an effect: My spiritual eyes were opened. And following in the footsteps of my Savior, I started to see humanity—especially my husband and my children—through His eyes instead of mine.
Because of the change this decision brought to my life, I invite you —no, I implore you—to join me on the job site of spiritual remodeling. If you decide to strap on a toolbelt (yes, a pink one, ladies!) and learn to be like Christ in every minute area of your life, then you too will be amazed at how much authentic spiritual growth you’ll experience. Your life will change as you begin to be transformed into the image of Christ. Your socks, like mine, will be completely rocked off this planet.