This is my last blog on the topic of houses. Maybe I have hammered on this enough and I have nailed the point (yeah I know, stop the dad jokes).
Inside a house, when we put in built in robes or kitchens or even lights, it’s often termed in the trade that these are the fittings. When the house is up to the 'lock up stage' tradies come in for the ‘fit out’.
The substance and form of the fit-out is always particular to the house owner. This is where the individual taste of the owner comes to the fore.
On many occasions it has reminded me of what God is doing in people’s lives. There is great comfort here as we begin to understand that God has designer plans for all of our lives. This excites me greatly, that God is doing something in me that he isn't doing in anyone else. I wonder what he's doing in you?
I want to continue with our theme on building houses and their particular parts. When you are involved in building a house you begin to realise just how many parts make up a house! Indeed lots of skilled people have to come into play to put a fully functional house together.
I have seen lots of different ways of putting a roof on. Plus there are lots of different styles too. From tiles, to colour bond – even the old Asbestos sheeting. Some are just a flat skillion roof but now days it’s far more popular to have a multi pitched roof with many hips and valleys.
Roofs protect us from the rain and the elements. Everyone knows what it’s like to have a leaking roof and I even know a few who have had a roof collapse.
In terms of our spiritual life, what are those things that protect us? And how are we suffering for the ‘leaks’ in our faith. How can we ensure that we don’t have a collapse? It’s worth pondering for a while!
Last week I wrote about building houses and the way in which foundations are not seen but yet are vital to a stable construction.
The walls are an interesting part as well. Their purpose is to keep what’s important in, and to keep what’s not out. They form a protection around us, a safety guard, a border and a barrier. They keep enquiring eyes out and harmful things at arm’s length. They keep the heat or the cold in and provide protection from the elements. It’s not much of a house without walls!
Our faith needs to have walls as well. There are some things that need to be kept out of our lives and some things that need to be kept in. We must construct spiritual walls that provide protection for our faith and that of our families. I wonder if you have ever thought about what your spiritual walls are?
A long time ago I used to be in the building game. It was a good job. You could stand back at the end of most days and see what you had done and where the effort had made a difference.
The funny thing about building is that most of your work - and most of the expense for the client - is in things that you don’t see! Take for instance the foundations (or footings as they are often called). Thousands of dollars are poured into them and you don’t get to see a thing!
But without good foundations a house is in serious trouble. I think there is a parable about this…
It’s exactly the same with our spiritual lives. Without good foundations we don’t stand. And here is the thing that we struggle with; most of our spiritual foundation work is not seen. It makes you think.
Last week I reminded you of the need for all of us, all of us, to regularly read our bibles. At the back of the auditorium we had some old fashioned book marks that provide some helpful tips to understanding the bible. They also offer a system to assist us in applying the bible to our lives.
There are still some of those bookmarks available and I encourage you to pick one of them up, put it in your bible and use it!
Often we can be fooled into thinking that nothing is happening with reading the bible so we give it away… but I have come to realise that reading the scriptures is a long term adventure. The regular pattern creates, in due course, the space for God to speak. We get to hear his heartbeat and to know his thoughts over time.
I would be keen to hear your experiences.