I’m typing super-loudly today, hoping you can hear me over the bang, bang, bang of builders undoing work they just did yesterday. We are now NINE weeks into a 2-3 week bathroom alteration. Keeping it fresh? Are you kidding me?
I married a builder. Not by profession, but definitely by DNA. We have either been building church or altering various homes for as long as I’ve known him. Every now and then, particularly when I’m eating dust in my own bedroom, I just want to stop everything right as it is and for us to settle in the status quo of what we have.
At times like this, my husband takes me by the hand and tells me, “Come, I want to show you something.” And we’ll go stand out on the lawn, looking back at the house and he’ll paint the picture for me of how he sees it all in his mind’s eye. Or we’ll step over the unlaid bricks and scattered tools and make our way into the the middle of a room that smells of concrete and looks like nothing, and he’ll describe where the window is going, and what tiles we’ll use and what colour the walls are going to be painted. “Only the very best for you, my love,” he says half-jokingly as he shows me the tap fittings he’s brought home for approval.
And with vision, the discomfit is replaced into the box of the temporary, rather than the all-consuming. We’re on a mission to stay alive and fresh in a dead and dying world, and we need to know that without vision, people perish.
Temporary things can kill you if you get lost in the dust.
Because too often we allow things that won’t last to become the things that finish us off and we forget that this body might by heading the same way as the world, but we are a spirit-led people and our spirit-life is just beginning!
Yes, we’re enduring the empty futility of this age of the temporary, but I am convinced that any suffering we endure is less than nothing compared to the vision we can get of the future. ‘For the hope set before us’ is the cry of our hearts as we step away from the dust and the banging, clanging noise, and take hold of the hand of the one who knows and let him lead us in what we should see.
And friend, whose heart is broken over what you’ve lost and what (or who) is dying in your very arms, I want to promise you that Jesus never breaks his promises, and when he promised you and yours life, he meant it. But it’s life for the eternal things, it’s a spirit-led life he’s promised. And the dust must settle and the temporary must die before the next is revealed. Oh, the agony!
"To this day we are aware of the universal agony and groaning of creation, as if it were in the contractions of labour for childbirth. And it’s not just creation. We who have already experienced the firstfruits of the Spirit also inwardly groan as we passionately long to experience our full status as God’s sons and daughters—including our physical bodies being transformed.
For this is the hope of our salvation.
But hope means that we must trust and wait for what is still unseen. For why would we need to hope for something we already have? So because our hope is set on what is yet to be seen, we patiently keep on waiting for its fulfillment." (Romans 8:22-25 (TPT))