I came to a liberating conclusion last week that I’d like to share with you.
I’ve finally realized after 12 years of botched home improvement projects, disastrous “fix-upper” ideas and way too many Home Depot trips that I am not gifted in doing house projects. And, even better, I am perfectly okay with that realization. In fact, it’s rather freeing because now I have zero desire to try and improve the one area of my life that is consistently frustrating. Yes, now I am free.
The final straw came last month. Heather was out of town for about a week and so I decided that would be the perfect time for me to fix our shower in the house which was in need of some remodeling. Some of the grout had worn away which allowed water to get behind the tiles, and so I needed to pull off the tiles, fix the wall behind it and reattach them. I estimated it would take 2 days. (If you’d like to laugh at me here in the story-you have my blessing.)
One begging/bribing phone call to my brother-in-law later, I was set to do the work. He came over bringing not only his good nature, but also his tools and expertise. At first it went quickly as we started by tearing away everything that was damaged. (The demo of the old tiles was fun, I admit.) And so, it wasn’t long at all until we had everything ready for reconstruction and I told him that I had it from there. All I had to do was to grout the new tiles into place and install the new shower handle. It seemed to me to be easy…just add these new things in with the old and be done.
(As a quick aside, this is where things always go wrong for me. It’s when I think “this is now the easy part.”)
Sure enough that’s what happened. As soon as my brother-in-law left and I started to add the new into the old…new grout in with the old grout and a new shower handle onto the old pipes…CHAOS. The grout didn’t match and made the whole thing bad. And the new shower handle didn’t fit the old fixture and made a huge leak that poured water behind the new tiles. None of these new things seemed to fit with the old which meant I had to redo everything if I wanted them to be compatible. I found out that sometimes it’s not doing something new that’s the hard part, but instead it’s trying to fit that new thing in with the old that is already there.
In our Scripture passage for this week, Jesus is confronted by some religious teachers called Pharisees about the new things he is doing with his teachings and with his disciples. Both in the way he lives and the things he says…these are so new or unexpected that some people don’t understand them. It just doesn’t fit with the way they see the world or themselves, and in fact, it really seems like they simply don’t even have the concepts for what he is doing. They can’t understand, because they are trying to hold on to both the old ways and the new.
On Sunday, we are going to talk about just how new of a thing God did in Christ. And, in fact, I think it is so new that we still struggle to understand it because most of the time we are trying to fit it in with our old ways of seeing the world or our ourselves. But, if we let go of some of those old ideas or concepts we could see and live the new so much easier. We’ll see you on Sunday when we talk about the new things happening and how we can live into those! And if you’d like to read the Scripture passage before then, you can find it here. See you on Sunday!