Stretching my calves on my front steps the other morning after a run, I noticed a nest that had been built this past spring was still nestled on top of the porch light. Bird nests blow me away. That robins and sparrows can make something so perfectly shaped, nurturing and safe out of sticks and mud, and they don’t even have hands!
I wondered to myself as I felt the strain in the back of my leg, what those birds were doing now. Had they built anything new? Or were they waiting for next spring and a fresh batch of eggs?
I didn’t build anything over the summer.
I’m a firm believer that God wants us to continuously grow and better ourselves and build upon our gifts and our talents to glorify Him. We aren’t supposed to be stagnant, to accept things as they are or to tread water. But, this summer I wasn’t treading water. I was flailing my arms and kicking my feet trying to keep my head above the water. It makes it awfully difficult to build when you’re feet don’t touch the ground.
But is necessary. And now it’s over. I’m back at the edge of the pool, ready to dive into fall.
Life was throwing me fastballs, so instead of being proactive I was reactive. But now that season is over. I’m turning the page. It’s time to build again. And, I have to admit, it’s a little scary. It’s a little daunting to dive back into my partially finished manuscript, my dormant friendships, my chaotic life. Oddly, I found security in using the excuse that life was crazy. It made me less accountable. My house was messier. I was less organized. Less productive. And I had a reason.
But not really. I mean, God wants us to rest and reflect. He does. But after we’ve plowed through the hiccups and hilltops we face in life, it’s time to build again. Build ladders and bridges to get where we need to go—up past the thing that brought us down, over the rough spots and into new pastures. Birds build nests to protect their eggs. Spiders weave webs to catch their next meal.
God calls each of us to build, as well. Sometimes that’s a grand castle, a masterpiece, a major accomplishment. Sometimes it’s a map to help us find our way, or a footstool to help us reach our goals. But He definitely calls us to build. I hear Him calling me. And I am ready to get out my virtual hammers and nails, saws and sandpaper, to bang out the sorrow, cut up the excuses and create a smooth surface.
What about you? What is God calling you to build this fall?
Laura L. Smith