By David Ramos
Last Saturday I watched one of those home improvement shows and it featured a couple who wanted to make their home look like a Spanish mission. They didn’t know how to do it nor did they have the resources to make it happen, however, along came this show that would make their home into their dream home. Their home already had the semblance of a Spanish mission but apparently needed some work. At first the owner thought, it just needed a little make over to give it the look and feel of a Spanish mission, however, upon closer inspection the stucco and wood had dry-rotted and had to go. Much to their amazement, the builders had to tear down whole sections of their home. Shocked, these owners watched as bulldozers came in their front lawn and tore the place up. At one point you could of see the demonstrable anxiety upon their faces when the whole front of their once beloved home was missing.
Lately I’m feeling like those homeowners. God called me into ministry and I thought, “Great, I’m been waiting for this, I’m sure there’s some stuff I’ve got to work on, put together, brush up on.” Man, have I been mistaken! I thought I needed some “detailing,” God apparently has some other plans that I’m just finding out about. You see upon closer inspection God is showing areas of my life that have dry-rotted, stuff that very much like that homeowner, I wasn’t even aware of. God is saying, “This stuff is going to have to go.” To my shock and utter amazement God has showed up to my doorstep with some bulldozers and is tearing the place up! Crash goes my theological assumptions! Crunch goes my esteemed puny categories! Snap goes some relationships! Rip goes my constructed illusions revealing some embarrassing emptiness leaving conviction in its wake! Aaaargh! To be quite honest brothers and sisters—this is quite painful.
Like those homeowners, I neither have the knowledge, skill, or resources to make these changes happen. I am watching in bug-eyed silence watching stuff go down, knowing God is right and waiting to see what will happen. I am suffering loss with a promissory note that things will get better. What I thought was a small job is turning out to be a much more greater and costly job. While this is a painful and arduous process, I am submitting to God’s workmanship, which isn’t much but standing still and trying to get out of the way.
So often we dream and think that we will do some great thing for God, some edifice for God’s glory, however, as when God spoke to King David, he tells us, “I will build you a house.” Sisters and brothers I don’t know what the future holds, right now I’m too busy watching God make the rough places smooth.
“Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low; and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough ways shall be made smooth.” Luke 3:5