Lessons from Woodworking

“That’s going to be a table?”
These are the words my wife uttered in disbelief this past weekend during our trip to Lowes in Amarillo. I had a project to build two end tables for a coworker and I was picking up some lumber. After planning out what I would need, I only needed three pieces of wood, so my wife’s surprised reaction was somewhat warranted. The next day I went over to my friends house who had a couple of tools I needed and I finished the tables that I had set out to build.

Through the whole process, I was reminded of a wise and loving Master builder- Jesus. Ephesians 2:10 reads: “For we are his workmanship created in Christ Jesus unto good works which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” Not only is Jesus our Master builder, but we are a workmanship or masterpiece. As I reflected over the events of this past week, I was reminded of a few truths about our Master builder.

  1. God has a plan. 
    My wife didn’t know how three pieces of wood was going to become to end tables. While they weren’t ornate or extreme my complicated to build, they weren’t simple either. However, I knew exactly how three pieces of lumber would turn into what I wanted.

    Sometimes in my life, I think to myself: “What is God doing? I don’t see how He is going to use me.” But it is in that moment that I forget that God is a Master builder, and while I may not know how everything is going to turn out, He has a plan for my life.

  2. It might take longer than expected.
    I have to admit something: I’m somewhat new to solo woodworking projects. I’ve helped a lot of people and have watched others, but this was my first. Because I was going to my friends house to borrow some tools, I communicated with my wife what time I thought I would be done due to having only one car and needing to be picked up. I told her a time and got to work while she went home. Fast forward a couple hours: Crystal comes back, and I’m no where near being finished! Fast forward a couple more hours: I finished one. The last one came together fairly quickly after the first, but the entire process took a lot longer than I expected.

    While the illustration somewhat breaks down at this point, because I as the constructor should have expected it, There is never anything that takes God by surprise. While we think that what He is doing is taking longer than we thought, it is taking exactly the amount of time God wants it to.

    My brother in law waited for a long time to get married. He waited while all his friends were getting married. He went on staff as assistant pastor as a single guy. It wasn’t until he was 32 when God brought along the lady he would marry. All through the process, He knew that God was in control. It took longer than he expected, but it happened at the exact right time.

    Maybe God has called you to pastor, but He hasn’t opened the door yet. Maybe you’ve been praying and praying for children, but your family is still only two people. Perhaps you’ve planted a church and the amount of people is not going very quickly. Don’t forget that God’s timing is perfect.

    He has a plan for you. It might seem that God’s plan doesn’t make any sense. You lost your job that provides well for your family, allows you to be involved in giving much to missions and be a blessing to those around you. God calls you to move states to start a church where you know nobody and your family is no where near.
    The last lesson to learn is this:

  3. God’s plan has a beautiful finish.
    While I am thrilled at how the tables turned out, I would be lying if I said they were without flaws. One of the three pieces of lumber I chose was far less than perfect. (I’m told that is part of the learning experience.) While God’s plan doesn’t always make sense and takes longer than expected, His plan is beautiful (and perfect) when it’s completed. Those who wait to marry who God wants find God’s plan is beautiful. It might seem like it takes a long time, but the church God leads you to will be the best church for you. New people will hear the Gospel and be discipled at the church plant that took you from everything familiar. God’s plan is wonderful when it’s completed.

Remember as you go through this week that He is a wise and loving Master builder. You can trust His plan.

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