Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Home Improvements

I love home improvement shows.

I USED to want to be on a home improvement show.

I no longer want to be on a home improvement show.

From the first time we walked through our new house, my groom and I had great plans for making it "ours." Part of the plan from the time we put an offer on the house was to "improve" it. Once the offer was accepted, the expectation part of my brain shifted into overdrive.

There WAS so much I wanted to have accomplished BEFORE we moved in. Somehow, I expected it to be magazine-photo-shoot-ready. You know, the-last-few-minutes-of-the-home-renovation-show ready.

Then, when closing dates were set, reality set in.

There were not enough hours in the day or days in the week or weeks in the month, for all of my expectations to be fulfilled. The cabinets alone would take at least as long as we had to come in, much less be installed. I found myself feeling defeated and my excitement lacking. This huge blessing was quickly beginning to feel like a burden.

On one of my early morning walks, God once again spoke to me through music. As I listened to the lyrics of Shaun Grove's old song, "Welcome Home," I realized that there was a lesson for me to learn in the midst of this home renovation project we had begun.

The song likens our spiritual life to a house that has been neglected and boarded up to keep God from coming in and making it His home. It is a song of confession that ends up as an invitation to the Great Designer in to make the singer's heart and life His home.

Instantly, I began to pray that God would use our house to be that kind of picture, a place where His presence and influence are abundantly evident. We would be able to minister to our new neighbors and host whomever God would lead to our doorstep.

Yet, as I listened closer to the words of the song, I realized that my heart needed to be like the house we were updating.

Just as we had a wall torn down, I know that there are parts of my life I have kept God from being Lord over and I need to remove those walls.

Just as we had to patiently, painstakingly strip wall paper from the bedrooms and hall, I need to work just as diligently to allow God to strip the sin and shame from my life.

And, most importantly, just as I have come to terms that homeowners always have a project or something to do on their house, that until He calls me home or comes back, I will be a work in progress as well.

Home improvement shows are great. I'll continue to tune in, but the idea that everything will come together and be all shiny perfect in 30 minutes or an hour is unrealistic. I have accepted that my house will not be "done" when we move in on Saturday morning. It will probably not be "done" when God calls us to the next place to call home. But I am okay with that because it is a reminder to me that God's not "done" with me yet either.

"And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ." Philippians 1:6

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