Monday, July 11, 2016
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When you've got young grandchildren, over the years you keep learning about these "heroes" they have from children's videos and television programs. Now, we had grandchildren who got very well acquainted with characters like Bob the Tomato and Larry the Cucumber from "Veggie Tales". Back in their day it was "Blue's Clues", "Bob the Builder", and so we had to learn about those. Bob the Builder, now he was the cause of some major excitement one Christmas. An aunt and uncle gave our 3-year-old grandson Bob the Builder coveralls. See, Bob would wear this yellow hardhat and blue coveralls, with yellow tools hanging from a tool belt. The coveralls even have the belt, with a yellow plastic hammer, a plastic screwdriver, a plastic wrench. When our grandson emerged from the bedroom as Bob the Builder, man, he just lit up with excitement.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "The Excitement of Being a Builder."
Yes, our grandson was really excited about being a builder. It's supposed to be an exciting role for all of us. No, you don't have to wear the coveralls and the belt with plastic tools. No. But God would love to have you think of yourself this way: "I'm ___________ (put your name in here) the Builder!" Not the kind who builds things; the kind who builds people like your husband, your wife, your son, your daughter, your fellow workers, or your fellow students. You build up your friends, your employees, and the people you serve the Lord with.
God describes the construction project that He wants you to help on in our word for today from the Word of God. In Ephesians 4, beginning with verse 15, here's what He says, "Speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into Him who is the Head, that is, Christ. From Him the whole body (that's all the people who belong to Him), joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work." Jesus is building every person who belongs to Him and He wants us to help Him with that building – all of us, including you. God wants you to be a part of His program of building the lives of the people you know.
Ephesians 4:29 calls us out of the business of demolishing people and into the business of constructing people. "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths (By the way, I wonder how a recording of your last week's conversations would sound in light of this command?), but only what is helpful for building others up..." Only what builds them up; that ought to be our goal for the things we say to people and about people.
You build up people in your world when you make them feel valuable when they're with you, when you compliment them, when you take interest in what matters to them, when you pray with them, when you tell them what you appreciate about them. How are you doing on using those building tools in the lives that are closest to you? By the way, the people who are most difficult in your life are probably the people who need your building the most. They may very well be acting the way they do because they've been torn down so much.
Building has another dimension; holding up a mirror to someone you care about, and showing them things about them that might be hurting them and hurting others. See, you win the right to "speak the truth in love" – positive or negative – when you consistently let them know how much you value them.
It's no accident you're with the people you're with. God placed you in their life to help Him build them, encourage them, and grow them. Don't miss one of the big reasons you are where you are. My grandson, he thought being a builder was really exciting. I hope you do, too. On Bob the Builder they used to say, "Can we build it?" And the answer would be, "Yes, we can!"
Look around at the people in your world. Can you build them? Yes, you can!