Monday, July 6, 2020

Building a Lasting House - Martin Wiles

Unless the Lord builds a house, the work of the builders is wasted. Psalm 127:1 NLT
He wasn’t a carpenter by trade—and he never built a house.
As far as I can remember, Dad never had a hobby—until he began pastoring a smaller membership church in the lower regions of South Carolina. Since he had a lot of time on his hands, he needed a hobby. He chose woodworking.
He began with small projects—a square piece of wood on which he glued a nice outdoor picture. Then he started fancying up the frames a bit. From this small beginning, he moved on to more detailed and complicated projects such as potato bins, shelves, cedar chests, toy boxes, a canopy bed for my daughter, and finally a bedroom suite from mom. Any little nick nack around the house Mom wanted, he built. Most of what he built stayed around the house or was given to a family member.
Dad had perfectionistic tendencies, so nothing he built had flaws—at least not noticeable ones. He spent more hours than he should have on everything he built. When he finished, he proudly stamped his name in some inconspicuous place.
No matter what Dad built, he always used tools of some type: saws, lathes, sanders. And of course, glue and screws. Something had to hold together the items he constructed. Without these, nothing he built would have been of any use to anyone. By the time Dad died, he had an entire shop full of tables and woodworking tools.
Jesus also knew a little about building. He was a carpenter and had been taught the trade by His earthly father. What He built, we’re not told, but He built. And by the inspiration of His Spirit, He told the psalmist hundreds of years before a little something about carpentry—although carpentry of a different type. We must involve God in the building of a house—whatever type it is—if the house is to survive.
Earthly homes are only shells. The home is the relationships that inhabit the shells, and unconditional love, time, patience, and a willingness to adapt and change must characterize these shells if the home is to survive the storms that will rage against them. Dad knew a lot about those tools too. And so did Jesus … and the psalmist.
God is the only one who can give us the tools to build lasting homes. Let Him teach you how to build such a home.
Prayer: Father, we entrust our homes to You. Teach us how to make them endure.

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