Friday, May 6, 2011


I made my way down stairs for my ritual cup of coffee this morning. As I approached the kitchen I was greeted with disheveled dishes piled high on the countertop, remnants of last night's dinner. Clean, no less, they sparkled in the dawn's first sun. As I slowly removed a plastic cup that balanced atop the disfigured display, it's heavier counterparts, a metal spoon rest and stainless steel pot, slid abruptly, loudly crashing into the sink.

I hoped the blatant racket hadn't disturbed the tranquility that still rested in our home.

I continued on, carefully, methodically removing each dish and utensil, like figuring out a puzzle, until every last piece was returned to its proper place ready for use again.

In the moment, I recall a fleeting notion, surely a wise warning, however, quickly dismissed last night.

This is not gonna hold.

"Na," I say to the quiet prediction. "I built it well, supported safe."

Ya, until the time arrived this morning, to disassemble my domestic piece of art.

A new thought passes through my mind...

...Who does this? Who stacks dishes piled high, with no   organization, but with perfect strategy, building weightier ceramic cake plate atop flimsy, plastic throw-away container, while forks protrude every which way like an abstract bouquet of assorted crockery?...

Of course, I had to own up.

I do this.

I admit, in a weird way it's a challenge. I freely wonder how clever I can get as I skillfully pile one dish upon another, allowing just enough space for air to invade tight places. I even stand back and admire my accomplished, yet temporary, faulty work.

This makes me think about my life as a Christian.

Is it possible that I might, at times, build my religion in this very same fashion?

I regretfully recognize that I have.

God warns us in Matthew 7:24-27 to build our houses on solid ground. 

“Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.” (NLT).

I confess, I have not always listened in this case. I have not always built my house according to Jesus's insightful advice.

Just like last night. I ignored the warning of disaster to come.
I wanted to do it my way because it seemed easier.
Because I thought I could.

Should I have piled high still dripping dishes instead of taking the time to be orderly, of drying and putting away, following convention of first-things-first and finish what you start?

I believe so.
A practical practice of follow through.

I see how this reflects in my life as a Believer at times. It reveals the issue that I am drawn to doing a lot of things at one time. I do tend to pile high [priorities], with the balancing act of a clever disciple only to find my efforts crash around me as I crash and burn (out).

I need discipline to be basic, to diligently take care of the basics first. All the added "piled high" extras can and do become heavy and ultimately collapse the whole sand castle.

I want not my prayer life or my Bible time to mirror that of a plastic throw-away container, but to lay secure my house like a cast iron skillet.

May I be given the grace to learn to be obedient, to take the time to build the basics of my faith with order, diligence and passion. Everything else is frosting.

No comments:

Post a Comment