Mel wrote a great post called, “God’s Renovation Project.” I heartily approve. He’s speaking mostly in terms of what Jesus is doing in His house, His Body, His church. Sometimes when things look like a real mess, total chaos, dust everywhere, it’s not a train wreck or a natural disaster, it’s just a remodel. It’s a really good thing. You’re actually getting an upgrade……
We ourselves as individuals are also His house, His body, His church. We ourselves are temples of the Holy Spirit and He really wants to move in.
CS Lewis said in Mere Christianity, “Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right, and stopping the leaks in the roof, and so on: you knew that those jobs needed doing and you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably, and does not seem to make sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of– throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were going to be made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.”
A palace fit for a King. I love that analogy.
Anyway, the idea that God wants a personal relationship with YOU, that he wants to remodel YOU, is such a challenging one to convey to Christians and non believers alike. Non believers don’t really understand, they think you’re criticizing them like you’re saying, you totally need a bath, a complete make over, and a full remodel. And you do, you totally do, but what are we getting an upgrade on? Busted avocado green counters and torn yellow linoleum that wasn’t even attractive in it’s day. In other words, we’re simply getting rid of things like, fear, doubt, shame, anxiety, despair, insecurity, confusion, envy. You, the essence of you beneath the surface of the world’s grime is so beautiful, so priceless, just a genuine treasure really worth discovering and getting to know.
He calls you beloved…
Christians ourselves also don’t do very well with this concept. Jesus came to save YOU, He wants to remodel YOU, and then we promptly flee. Everybody wants to change the world, nobody ever wants to change themselves. We’re trying to fight a culture war here, we’re trying to save the lost, we’re trying to serve, we’re trying to protect tradition, or worst yet, we’re trying to balance the liberal/conservative scales or pendulum.
My dad once taught me something really valuable, shrink your world. The world around us doesn’t need to change, we need to change. “The world” is not really the problem, that’s just a reflection of us. The tiniest little transformation is each of us tears apart the very fabric of the universe, throws darkness into a tailspin, and likely costs you a few friends, too. Seriously, screaming about donkeys, elephants, and halftime shows, does absolutely nothing to change the world, but turning yourself over to Jesus sure does. That changes everything, and the ripples you leave behind in your wake changes the world.
So, let Jesus remodel YOU.