Thanks to bizarre circumstances the housing market has never been higher. Everywhere you go people are listing their homes in the hopes of scoring big…we’re one of those hopefuls.
But our home’s been a work in progress for over 5 years now. The ugly carpeted four-layered linoleum kitchen, super glued wallpapered dining room, and heavily wood paneled walls are all gone. More work remains, and now, that work has a timetable.
In order to sell we have to finish remodeling and do it as soon as possible (since the market prices will likely drop back down within this year—or even in a few months!).
And so these days you will find me chipping away at our grand list, alongside chores, caring for our son, working on my novels, and fulfilling church obligations…I’m tired, I’m sore, but I’m also excited.
My blood, sweat, and tears will pay off—whether we end up selling or not. Our home will finally be finished! But no one will know how much work it took to get it that way.
The more work that goes into something the better it is. Take paintings for example…if you go to a gallery you’ll get to appreciate beautiful works of art, but what you won’t see is the hours and frustrations behind the finished works.
Aren’t we the same way? Each of us are (hopefully) under construction. Everyone is at varying levels of completeness (but no one is really complete). When you see an athlete perform or even a world renown person of Faith like Billy Graham preach, you are merely seeing a small piece of an unfinished masterpiece.
Oftentimes, as a Christian, I feel people look at me and think, “life has been easy for her.” They see the smiling faces in my picture frames and on Facebook and think they’ve got me figured out. As if anyone’s life is picture perfect.
A person’s character or faith isn’t something handed to them, but something earned/forged through the overcoming of life’s difficulties. That is the measure of a good man or woman—their perseverance despite the devil’s attacks—to do what is right and to become something more.
I’ve been watching the TV series, Smallville, lately and couldn’t help but understand/sympathize with the lead villain, Lex Luthor. No matter how hard he tries to do the right thing, his plans always backfire. His father doesn’t love him, the town he’s trying to help recover financially isn’t respecting him, and even his best friend (Clark Kent) is lying to him…
“The road to darkness is a journey, not a light switch.” —Lex
I found myself believing that he’d somehow earned the right to retaliate—to give up on being good because the “do-gooders” around him weren’t what they appeared to be.
In many ways they painted him as a man of character and integrity, fighting his way out from under his evil father’s thumb. Now…I realize that it wasn’t “righteousness” that he sought after. But what came with it.
As much as he loathed a father who placed greed and wealth above him, he was no different in that he envied what the townspeople, particularly Clark and his family, possessed.
Clark’s father was a good man, his mother was alive, he had friends who trusted him, and (outwardly) wasn’t burdened by wealth or responsibilities. Lex wanted to be a part of all that, but couldn’t escape his father’s shadow.
This envy is what leads to the fall of many “good” people because inwardly they never really wanted to do the right thing. Just as many give their lives to God simply to avoid hell—missing out on the real reward which is a relationship with Christ.
This world is full of Lex Luthors. People who are selfish and prideful, chasing after their own lusts and desires. Such people lack character and sacrifice. Instead of allowing God to transform their scars they take each failure as another reason to trust in their own misconceptions of reality or morality.
In other words, they are proud of their disheveled home, where cobwebs are forming upon unfinished projects and scattered tools. “There’s nothing wrong with my house,” they say as they judge their neighbors from the porch—unwilling to surrender and admit to themselves that the state of their home is in shambles.
If you seek righteousness for righteousness’ sake, it will not matter how many people oppose you or how many times you face hardships. Why? Because you aren’t doing it in vain or for selfish reasons—your doing it because it’s the right thing to do and nothing the devil throws at you from within or without can change that.
As I remodel my home, I surely hope that I am also under construction. That I remain humble and willing to allow God into my heart to do only what He can do.
I don’t want my heart in shambles, or collecting cobwebs in neglect. I want to constantly be in a state of remodeling until the good Lord says I’m complete.
Is your heart under construction?