The morning of December 9, I was struggling and we had barely begun working. I work with Joe Martin as a literature evangelist, and this particular morning we were working in Loveland, Colorado. Before Thanksgiving break, while playing in a basketball scrimmage, I completely tore my ACL and also parts of my meniscus. I will have to have surgery over Christmas break and then miss 6-8 weeks of work for recovery. Through special organized prayer offered by Principal Don Reeder, Pastor Micheal Goetz, my coach Glenn O’Halloran, and my parents, the Lord strengthened my knee enough to continue walking door-to-door sharing Jesus. However, walking was not painless, and that Wednesday morning was proving to be especially difficult. I asked God to strengthen and bless me as I was trying to give Him my best despite my condition.
I approached a small house with a white picket fence and rang the doorbell. A gentleman came to the door. I explained that I went to a Christian school and began to tell him what I was selling and about the cookbook, when he cut me short. He asked if he could simply give me a donation. Of course I said, “Yes.”
He reached into his wallet, and he pulled out a $100 bill. I was shocked. I tried to leave him all of my books, but he refused. I said many thanks and was on my way. I stood in his driveway filling out the receipt when he came back out of his house and asked me how much tuition was. I gave him an approximate answer and he asked how much I needed. I told him that he had already been more than generous, but as I did, he held out to me an additional $500. I was at a loss for words. I told him that I would feel awful if he did not take at least one book, so he took a Peace Above the Storm.
Then I said, “Before I leave, I just have to ask; Why would you do something like this for me?” And after a moment he said, “Because Jesus did it for us.” That statement brought tears to my eyes as the weight of those words sank in. I prayed with him, said as many thanks as I could, and continued on. It wasn't until later when I was able to meet up with Pastor Joe and share the news that he pointed the most amazing part of it out to me. He reminded me that $600 is equivalent to approximately 2 months of work, and the doctor had told me it would be 6-8 weeks (2 months) before I would be able to work following my surgery.
This injury has been difficult for me, but now I know without a doubt that God will bring far more good from it than the pain I have felt. I may not know what it is right now but I'm willing to trust God and see how He will continue to work through this temporary setback. Receiving the exact amount you need in the form of hundreds of dollars does not happen by chance. God knew I had a need, and He filled it. As the kind man implied, Jesus paid it all for us, so what should stop us from giving what we can back to God?
When Philpott began teaching the class in 2006, the shop contained a ban saw and a drill press. With his continued management, the shop now boasts over $20,000 worth of machines, including various lathes, sanders, saws, and finishing materials.
The latest addition to the woodshop’s array of machines is a computerized numeric control (CNC) engraving machine, which allows the students to manipulate an image or text using the machine’s software, and then set parameters that guide a drill bit to cut or engrave the image in wood.
Sophomore Hannah Phelps said, “Using your imagination, you can really make about anything in this class.” Her classmate Devaney Bright agreed. As they both watched the CNC machine cut shapes of the continents out of a piece of cherry wood, Bright described projects she has made for her mom and her current inlaid map project. “I like learning how to use tools that I wouldn’t have gotten a chance to otherwise,” she added. Both she and Phelps are planning on taking welding class from Mr. Philpott next semester.
“I want the students to feel comfortable in a shop setting, use different machines, and work with their hands,” he said. Campion—and Dan Philpott—value hands-on education that provides students with skills they can use now and in the future. Philpott hopes students will walk away with the skills and confidence to tackle future projects and household fixes themselves.