This Old House

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The Master spoke, but I scarcely heard
Above the noise and the din
Of hurrying feet and hammer-stroke
I was building a house for Him.
Then He took me aside and He taught me this
While earthly things grew dim
He would rather a place in this heart of mine 
Than the house I was building for Him.
– “The Master Spoke” Author Unknown

My old joints are groaning today. My husband and I have been slowly remodeling our aging log home. The process is slow because time, money, and energy are always just short of what we need. I spent the afternoon yesterday sanding the new doors and sidelights that adorn the little “office” overlooking my beloved Clearwater River.

This morning my body is complaining.

The log cabin we built in the radical seventies is really showing the years. Raising five children has taken its toll on it. Like me, it’s sagging in places and looking a little tired.

But there’s one thing I know. This house may be frayed at the edges, but it’s solid right down to the foundation. I know this because I know who built it. My dear carpenter husband poured the foundation himself, and he builds things to last.

He made the foundation walls especially strong because he knew they would have to bear the weight of the logs. He envisioned the end result and built the house especially to the design specifications.

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 I know another carpenter, too. Really, the best. This builder doesn’t work with wood. He works with flesh, soul, and spirit. He doesn’t build houses; He builds lives.

  Consider Jesus,
 the Apostle and High Priest of our confession;
He was faithful to Him who appointed Him, as Moses was also in all His house.
For He has been counted worthy of more glory than Moses, 
by just so much as the builder of the house has more honor than the house.
For every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God.
Christ was faithful as a Son over His house-whose house we are,
if we hold fast our confidence 
and the boast of our hope firm until the end.
Hebrews 3:1-4, 6

 We are His house! A temple, actually. A place of worship.

The foundation is the Rock set in place by the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Upon this foundation we add our lives:

Now if any man builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw,
each man’s work will become evident;
the day will show it because it is to be revealed with fire,
and the fire itself will test the quality of each man’s work.
1 Corinthians 3:12-13

We are a living temple, our souls the holy altar upon which we offer the sacrifices of a broken heart. Here we give the dreams, hopes, and desires of our lives to Him. From here our prayers rise like sweet incense in the holy place.

Jesus’ sacrifice tore the veil separating God from humanity. Here man walks with God once again. We are as holy to God as the temple that once stood in Jerusalem. We are holy because God has chosen to live in us.

May that knowledge inspire us to set aside the things that weaken and dishonor His house. May He teach us to build with an eye to the future, choosing the precious stones for the work.

May His House be forever holy and beautiful in His sight.

What are you building today? Do you feel like a temple or a shack? How do we decide the proper building materials for our templesWhat things might we have to change to build with an eye toward the future?

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About PamThorson

Pam is a licensed practical nurse, author, and caregiver. Her first book, Song in the Night, recounts her son's fight for life after a spinal cord injury. Her second book, Out from the Shadows: 31 Devotions for the Weary Caregiver, offers hope and encouragement to those who care for others. Her third book, Arrow: the History and People of an Idaho Community, Volume One, presents the history of the community of Arrow, Idaho.

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