Under Construction

carpenter_hands

Know ye not that ye are a temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?
1 Corinthians 3:16

We are his workmanship.
Ephesians 2:10

 

I have officially reached the halfway mark of my mission. Gosh, where has the time gone? Feels like I just got here.

Regardless of how many people have or have not listened to our message, the reality of my service is that a huge transformation is taking place – and that change is within me.

Caution: Under Construction
At some point in service, every missionary hits the hard hat zone. In the last few weeks, I’ve hit mine. This is when you find the Lord beginning demolition so he can rebuild you. Funny, before his ministry, Jesus was a carpenter, and he seems to be continuing his trade (this time on my heart). Reminds me of a great quote by CS Lewis.

Toulouse Castle2

Castle near Toulouse, France

“Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense.

“What on earth is He up to?

“The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.”   – CS Lewis

It’s not enough for God to inspire you, He wants to change you.  Where you and I might be satisfied with a quaint cottage, He refuses to settle for any dwelling less than a palace.  After all, aren’t we temples of God?  No expense is spared. No corners are cut.

Ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God; And are built upon the foundation of apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord; In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.
Ephesians 2:19-22 (KJV)

Carpenter handsI suppose I got too comfortable in Eysines, like I had things figured out. The Lord knew this, so He sent me here to tear down my pride a little so He could start reconstructing me into a better missionary, a better person, a better daughter of God.

And, frankly, the demolition knocked me for a loop. I mean, God sends you out to help other people rebuild their lives, but in the process, He demolishes the person that you were and rebuilds you into the child He intends you to be.

The dry and barren ground is replaced by landscapes of grace. Rickety walls are demolished, and shaky foundations restored. Renovation never feels good – especially when what you expected (a few shelf additions) turns into the gutting of an entire west wing.

Chateau de Saint-Martory, built 1520

Chateau de Saint-Martory near Toulouse, France, built 1520

But that’s what happens when God has high aspirations for you. He envisions a complete restoration.  He won’t stop until He is finished, and He won’t be finished until you have been “conformed to the image of his Son” (Romans 8:29).

He is the Master Architect, the Master Carpenter. He knows what He is doing.

It was kinda hard to see that this past week. It has been a humbling experience, and I am hoping that I can continue to grow to become the temple my Father in Heaven wants me to be.

Love to all,
Soeur Lauren Nef

 

 

 

They are starting to put ads on our blog. We do not approve these and are not getting any residuals whatsoever, so we apologize for the content. We’ll see what we can do about it.

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