Tip – TAP – BAM – pause – tip – TAP – BAM – pause. You could almost use the cadence as a metronome. It was the sound of my father driving nails into a piece of wood; usually a two-by-four used for framing a house. Or, scrape – slish – SWOSH – pause – scrape – slish – SWOSH – pause. This time he would be laying brick.
My father worked as a builder most of his life; he even put up several of the homes that we lived in. Mennonite pastors were rarely salaried in those days, so carpentry was his “tent-making” trade. He could eye-up measurements, angles, quantities and fittings with amazing accuracy. He always did whatever he did well.
The call for builders, good ones, punctuates God’s Word.
Ezekiel 22:30, a classic verse used to highlight the ministry of intercession, indicates that God “looked for a man who could build up the wall and stand in the gap.” God is looking for people who can build—others, the church, the Kingdom. We are exhorted to “excel in gifts that build up the church,”1 even as we encourage one another with words that are “helpful for building others up.”2
Those who build will be those who are made in the image of God, and co-workers with Christ. Because Jesus promised that He would build His church.3 And we look forward to dwelling in that wonderful city “whose architect and builder is God.”4
I remember my earthly father as one who put a lot of zeal and precision into what he built. Our Father in heaven is the Master Builder, “the Builder of everything.”5
Who am I building up today? Are the things I am building set on a solid foundation?
1I Corinthians 14:12; 2I Thessalonians 5:11; Ephesians 4:29; 3Matthew16:18; 4Hebrews 11:10; 5Hebrews 3:3-4