Several weeks ago we had our driveway repaved. The project really needed to be done. There were cracks and hollows in the pavement, weeds were sprouting up through the weak spots, and it was fast becoming an eyesore.
As we discussed the contract with the paving company, we quickly became aware that the cost of doing a proper job would depend on what was found when the existing asphalt was removed.
And so the work began. Jackhammers, a backhoe and shovels were used to break up the ground. As the pavement was hauled away it became evident, to our disappointment, that the laneway had been built on a faulty foundation. Instead of the 6-8 inches of crushed rock that’s recommended, there was only a 2 inch layer of fine rock on top of sand. No wonder the pavement didn’t last!
This experience in home maintenance has caused me to reflect (yet again) on my life. Through the regular wear and tear of day to day living, and especially in times of crisis and pressure, there are “cracks” that appear in my thoughts and behavior. Judgements and critical thoughts, like the sand under our driveway, though usually hidden, run deep. Generosity, compassion and genuine love fashioned from “crushing” are too often but a superficial layer. “Weeds” of anger, impatience and offense spring up and try to take root. “Depressions” form as worries about health, wealth and the future press in on my peace. I am reminded that though the Lord has done a good work in my life, He is far from finished with me. One of my favorite teachers about life and the Bible is Joyce Meyer. She often says: “I’m not where I want to be, but thank God I’m not where I used to be!” I am a work in progress.
As with the the laneway project, I realize that the cost of “renovation” in my life depends on how much work needs to be done. Uncovering and dealing with what lurks under the surface of my carefully constructed facade can be costly indeed. It will inevitably cost me my pride, my illusions, my comfort, my time, my money. But there is so much more of value to be gained — under the skillful direction of the One who knows me best, the “eyesores” in my life can be transformed into qualities that will be a blessing for the present and even for eternity.
Am I willing to go there? Will I allow the Master Builder and Lover of my soul to do whatever work is necessary to make me a more pleasing vessel to Him? Am I able to completely commit myself to the One who began a good work in me?
Yes, I am confident of this: that He who began a good work in me will be faithful to complete it! (Philippians 1:6)
Lord, I know I am under construction. You aren’t finished with me yet. There are surprises, even to me, hidden beneath the surface in my life. I give you permission to remove the hardened exterior. Break it up and take it away, Father. Uncover whatever shouldn’t be there. Dig it up. Take it out. Crush my heart of stone. Set me on a firm foundation. Make me increasingly serviceable and profitable and beautiful to You. I trust in You, for you are faithful to the end.
As for our driveway … I am happy to say we now have a new smooth asphalt surface built on a strong foundation that we expect to last for as long as we own the house!