i Build

"The wise woman builds her house..."--Prov. 14:1 a All my kids love to build. They spend countless hours building with anything they can find: blocks, Tinkertoys, Lincoln logs, and now, Legos. When we were studying ancient Roman history, Janna made a Roman bathhouse, complete with toilets and separate rooms for each of the different phases of the bath. When we studied medieval history, she made a castle with soldiers standing in line. She was very creative with what she had and found ways to represent what she envisioned in her mind.

Matthew is now heavily into the Lego building phase. He saves his pennies for Lego sets and meticulously pores over the instruction book, figuring out where each piece goes and how it all fits together. It is rather amazing that a box full of loose pieces come together to create something quite intricate. He takes pictures of his finished products like they're his babies.

And Jonathan? Well, he is just starting to get into the building thing. This morning, he spent a couple hours building with his duplos, making "minions" (from Despicable Me) and having loads of fun putting them together, stacking them up and taking them apart. Over and over again.

As a mom, I don't build with blocks or Legos, but I am discovering the joy of partnering with God in building into my children's lives. I think that of all the things I write about this week, this is my favorite job as a mom. Because I have been with my children from day one, I have a unique and unparalleled glimpse into their personalities that few others can. I have the opportunity to discern their interests and provide ways to cultivate them. I can see their areas of weakness and design ways to help them to move past them or strengthen them. When they are struggling with issues in their lives, the Lord uses me to speak a word of guidance or truth to them. Each of these things is like another brick that God can use to build up my children into the people He wants them to be. I can become His hands, building up my children piece by piece.

Left alone, a pile of blocks will just be a pile of blocks. However, when we have a vision, a picture of the end product, coupled with a willingness to persevere, God can use us to make His picture of our children become a reality. Eph. 2:10 tells us that He has created good works for His children to do. When I work with God to help them discern, cultivate and grow in their gifts and talents, I am then able to contribute a piece in God's ultimate Building, the church. Eph. 4:11-12 goes on to say, "It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ." When I do my part in building up my children, He then takes them and incorporates them into the church and uses all of us to reflect Jesus to a world that needs Him.

Dear mom, can you grasp what an awesome privilege we have? When this picture captured my heart, it has totally given me a new appreciation and value for my role as a mother. I hope that it does for you too.

Let's get building!

This is part 3 of 5 in a series. The others can be found here.