r u a builder or a buster? – focus on the positive

I have been trying to think on positive things, not painful or negative things. A good goal right?  I wish it was some noble ideal that I set my heart on first thing every day, but to be honest, right now it comes from necessity. I was in the dentist’s chair yesterday, having a root canal done. Now I have enjoyed this wonderful experience many times before, but on this occasion there were some complications which led to a few moments of pretty high level pain. I had to force myself to focus on something positive. 

I think this is a little like life and like work, and like church too. If we are not careful, the painful things can dominate our thinking and lead to some stupid actions – like wanting to punch and kick the dentist, his assistant and bust his equipment! (just kidding  – sort of)- I imagined the headlines: Pastor Goes on Rampage in Ottawa Dentist Office

Thankfully I thought restraint to be the better option: in a moment of frustration, pain, discomfort, and trauma – it is so easy to become a ‘buster’ or a ‘breaker’. Yet God calls me to be a ‘builder’.

My task as a ‘pastor-teacher’ according to Ephesians 4:11-13 is to “build up the Body of Christ to maturity and prepare it for works of service”. Your task as a member of the Body of Christ is to “show mutual concern” (1 Corinthians 12:25,26) and “build up the church” as The Apostle Paul exhorts (1 Corinthians 14:12).

Interesting that these two thoughts came across my desk this morning – hope they speak to you like they did me:

I saw them tearing a building down – a gang of men in a dusty town.

With a yo-heave-ho and a yes lusty yell , they swung a beam and a side wall fell.

I asked the builder if these men were as skilled as men he would hire if he were to build.

He laughed and said “Oh no indeed, common labor is all I need for these men can wreck in a day or two what builders have taken years to do.

I asked myself as I went my way, what kind of role am I to play?

Am I a builder who builds with care and measures life with the rule and square?


Am I a wrecker who roams the town content in a role of tearing down?

–          Anonymous

Originally published by D. Johns on Tues. Feb. 2nd 2010 at http://www.brockvillefirst.com


About dougjohns

Doug Johns retired from ministry in Canada to devote more time to international work. Right now he pastors part time at the International Baptist Church in Bielefeld, Germany. He is a graduate of York Univ. (B.A.) and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (M.Div.). Doug is married to Yvonne and they have four grown children plus eight grandchildren. Doug has had significant experience as a Presbyterian Minister in Ontario, Saskatchewan, British Columbia and New Brunswick. He has served as Associate Pastor at West Congregational in Haverhill, Massachusetts; Doug is committed to international ministry in Romania; and he has taken leadership in Christian Camping as Executive Director of Camp Fireside, NH; Glen Mhor Presbyterian Camp, Ontario; Timberline Ranch, BC. .... avid baseball fan of the Toronto Blue Jays ... Managed American Legion Baseball Team out of Creston BC in North Idaho League. Doug is a serious runner with many international half-marathons completed over the last 6 years.
This entry was posted in encouragement, leadership. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s