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