By Grace Johnson
I am always fascinated to watch craftsmen at work. When I worked on a farm in Derbyshire we had people who came to rebuild the dry stone walls that had fallen into disrepair. What a wonderful skill to carefully select the right size and shape stone, and to place them so that they perfectly fit to make the wall strong again. Those walls are important. One of their functions is to keep fire from spreading.
I love the picture that Peter draws of us as living stones -
‘So keep coming to him who is the living stone, though he was rejected and discarded by men but chosen by God and is priceless in God’s sight.
Come and be his living stones, who are continually being assembled into a sanctuary for God’ 1 Peter 2:4-5a
God isn’t just building a wall, he’s building a sanctuary, a meeting place and a place of encounter. These walls are not to stop fire, but to hold fire, to hold glory, to hold His very presence and to reveal himself in an incredible new way.
This cannot be built without each and every one of us. One stone won’t make a sanctuary. Each and every one of us is very precious and important to this building. You may feel you are so small, or even a funny shape or past your best! But in the builder’s hands your are so valuable and so needed.
I am really glad that during this fast period we have had he opportunity to seek God for personal realignment but now its time to consider how we function together. God never meant for us to fully express our relationship with him on our own. We belong to each other. We are family. We need each other.
The author of Hebrews encourages us to -
‘Discover creative ways to encourage others and to motivate them towards acts of compassion, doing beautiful works as expressions of love’ [Hebrews 10: 24 TPT]
After so many weeks in isolation, we may need to activate ourselves to reach outside our 4 walls! How about asking God for creative ways to encourage and bless someone this week, to express his love and to yield to God’s building plans. What about reaching out to someone you don’t know so well. Go for it!