When is the last time you built a house? Not just picking out materials and colors and then calling a local contractor. I’m talking a hammer to nail from the ground up, house. I have never built an actual dwelling in which most people would want to live. About as close as I’ve gotten is my old stinky chicken coop with it’s hemlock floor and thin plywood sides. It currently looks a bit dated, not up to modern specifications, the roof is half off, and it needs a new coat of paint. That’s life… it happens… in time.
Let’s not debate the number of years or the hours in a day, but go back to Genesis 1 and 2. God created the earth in 6 days. Again, don’t get hung up on those “days”, just get it was a looooong time ago. He put every star in the sky, water in the sea, flying feathered creatures in the air, and later breathed life into man. He created life cycles, gravity, and soooo much more! Heck, He put photosynthesis into action! He made plants to use carbon dioxide and man to need the oxygen that the plants put out. He didn’t just build something, He created something sustainable. Something that adheres strictly to the cycles and actions that He put into place. None of this was by mistake! God is the original master scientist carpenter, and He knew exactly what He was doing. Just think, the same laws apply today as they did then. There is still fish in the sea, the sun is still hot, and our gardens still need it to grow. If you trip and fall, the ground is still there with open arms to catch you. Ouch! The point is, it isn’t like how I built my, now old and dilapidated chicken coop. At one time, I was proud of that coop, and my chickens seemed pretty happy with it too! Yet, it didn’t last, even all my chickens are dead and gone. That’s life.
Back to Genesis. Adam and Eve, just like us, decided to do things their way and it bombed, BIG TIME! Sound familiar? So big that there was no coming back from it. (Genesis 2:3) They got the boot! Work the ground, fight with briars, and “Woman, you’ll be hurting come Labor Day!” Now, I had to have a little fun with words, don’t give me the boot! They had everything they needed, and yet they did the one thing God told them not to do. They ate of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. (Genesis 3:6) Sin had entered humanity. I just seen some of the repercussions of their actions with my almost two year old son today. I said, “Cade, don’t throw that tractor down the steps.” … (clink, hop, clink, clink, hop, clink)… It happens.
To build something that lasts there is a key component early in the process. The foundation has to be rock solid. It was solid for Adam and Eve but they messed it up! You may say, ”Well that’s great, but what if we’ve already messed up in life, got the boot, followed the example of Adam and Eve, or have threw the tractor down the stairs so to speak?” Well… as harsh as is sounds, we were born messed up. Our tractor already went down the steps, knocked a hole in the wall, let water in, flooded the house, and poisoned the well with antifreeze. Yes, that bad. Bad, bad! We’re still living, dealing with the brokenness that started with Adam and Eve, but God wasn’t finished yet! Even though they messed up and realized they were naked, He clothed them. (Genesis 3:21) I mean really? Someone spits in your face and you hook them up with a new get up? Yup, He did NOT have to do that. God still does what He doesn’t have to do today through His Son Jesus Christ, because He loves us. (John 3:16) These clothes aren’t animal skins, fig leaves, or a hardy Carhartt outfit. Nope, it’s cross of Christ bought, living in the resurrection clothing and housing for heirs of the King. (Romans 8:17) He made a way back, a new start! Jesus is the unshakeable Cornerstone to which our lives can be built anew. God loves us and wants us that much to make us an eternal lasting new construction from the ground up if we repent and believe in Him. The best part is, our Contractor has already been paid, we just need to let Him run point!
Isn’t it interesting that Jesus was a carpenter at least some of His time on earth? (Mark 6:3) He is still in the building and creating business today. Hand over the blueprints, the hammer, the nails, the paint, and the logic of life. Hold on, read His word, and listen to the Holy Spirit. Don’t jump ahead or do something without asking. It’s going to be a hard, painful but joyous process. You may wonder about His methods, but trust Him! Sometimes you’ll feel exposed when a wall is torn down, but trust me, it’s worth it. You needed that wall torn down. You may feel the heat of the forge, the cold windy nights before the windows are installed, and the rough grit of sandpaper knocking down rough edges. You will be better for it. (1 Peter 1:6-9) You will learn tons. You will celebrate stages as they are completed, and see some engineering feats you never could have ever imagined. With Jesus as the project manager, you are being built to last. One day the last nail will go in, the last piece of furniture will be slid into the right spot, the landscape will be flourishing, and it’ll be complete. It’ll be done and beautiful, in time.
Now go hand out a business card and tell someone about the awesome Carpenter you know.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17