God’s Building Plans

When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory. Ephesians 1:13A-14 NIV

First I want to give a big thank you to Alan of Devotional Treasures for inspiring me to get out of my funk. We’ve been dealing with a lot of serious health issues here with our two daughter-in-laws as some of you know. The one who was in the hospital with Covid is now home and gradually improving. The other is about to begin chemo for the same ovarian cancer that my wife battled through three years ago. Thanks for those of you who have prayed. I thought I would share today the encouragement God gave me while I was out for my walk yesterday.

Our lives seemed like a construction project that was being completed right on time; when these unexpected difficulties came and slapped a stop work order on our door. The inability to do a thing has been frustrating because it made me realize that in reality I am not in charge at all. It is easy to just blame the devil as some sort of evil building inspector, but God reminded me that His Holy Spirit in my heart is His guarantee that no matter how things look, everything is under His control. His guarantee is not really a down payment as a few translations render the word- because God has the resources to pay off our mortgage in full. Instead the Holy Spirit’s presence is like the deposit which we make on a home we wish to buy. That small amount of our money is our promise to the seller that we will pay their entire asking price once the lender runs our credit and sees that our finances are in order. The good news for us is that God is the buyer with the highest credit rating in the universe!

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Now, think of your darkest moment. At the time when nothing has worked out, your plans have been frustrated and your world turned upside-down, God guarantees that we are still His. He has bought us, by paying the full price of our sins with the precious blood of Jesus. Now the title to our hearts belongs to Him. Though we face very real troubles in this life, God’s Holy Spirit has not nor will He ever abandon us. That tiny spark of His life in us is – that guarantee of our inheritance – is like the Spirit of God that overshadowed Mary. So be patient because just as Mary carried that spark for nine months inside her, trusting that God’s promise was true, so we can trust Him to keep His promise to us. He has promised that we are His and that He will finish the building project of our souls right on time and precisely according to His plan!

Are We on God’s Crew?

You yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 2:5

As we work hard to build our churches sometimes we forget whose house it is. The home under construction under the supervision of God’s general contractor the Holy Spirit is for His. And since God in all His wonderful creativity has made us different then every color of living stone myst be included.

Being a part of God’s construction crew means more than just showing up for work. We are called to follow God’s blueprint if we are going to be on His construction site. And if we are to all be built together we need to do more than allow diversity we must pursue it! If glancing at God’s plans and seeing a lot of remodeling to do seems daunting, don’t walk off the job and quit. God is still at work in us and will hand out specific work orders for each of us on a daily basis.

The church is still an active construction zone. Stick around, pick up your tools and be willing to work with everybody He puts on the job. When Jesus is in charge we can start being less of an exclusive religious resort and more of a city on a hill that shines a light and glorifies our Father!

God’s construction Zone

As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive, as they are today. Genesis 50:20 ESV

A few years ago the street in front of our house was closed for construction while the city re-worked the storm drains. The job was complicated by an underground brook that also ran under the road and the project ended up being dug up and filled in four or five times. During one phase when the work of smashing and pounding was still going at11 p.m.; I put on my jacket and marched down the street to complain. The polite young foreman of the job explained that he was really sorry; but since they had dug up the road it had to be filled in before morning.

asphalt blur city cityscape

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Joseph’s life reminds me of our construction zone. First he was beaten, thrown into a pit and sold into slavery; by his brothers. In his new life, God began blessing Joseph and soon things started looking up then – wham! He was arrested and thrown into prison for a crime he didn’t commit.  But even in prison Joseph was blessed and years later God used him to interpret the pharaoh’s dreams and he was promoted to governor of the kingdom. Joseph’s key to success was that he understood construction zone living. He didn’t become bitter or use his position to retaliate against his brothers. Instead he helped those same guys who had thrown him into the pit. Joseph was able to forgive because he knew that no matter how many times his plans were torn down or dug up; that God had a way of turning it all into good. He knew that when things in life got turned upside down that God would work overtime until he turned into good and had the road of his life filled in by morning!