A Reflection of Praise: The Lord Builds the House

Unless the Lord builds the house, the people labor in vain.

Psalm 127:1

I stand in the middle of an empty room watching the fire blaze in the hearth and listening to the creaking sounds of fresh lumber settling in the walls of our home. I recall all the great battles the Lord has won for us. I pick up memories, like stones in my mind, and turn them over until they fully form:

the cries of desperation met with the one Voice Supreme,

forgiveness generously covering our souls removing shame from our brows,

the filling of joy where the prospect once tired of waiting. 

The house is resting. Earlier, children ran up and down the stairs. Friends laughed, prayed and wept together over plates of food the Lord multiplied in a last minute scramble to welcome the stranger. A group of chattery, young adults huddled around a table passing inside jokes and medjool dates between them. 

Now the babies sleep and the friends have gone, full of sweet pepper chicken and the encouragement from testimonies shared. Some left grasping at threads of hope picked and pulled in conversations had here, pleading with Jesus that the thread won’t break on the way home.

This is the house the Lord is building.

I marvel that the day can hold both bustling proof of the church body at work and a respite in solitude before His throne. Earlier, followers of Jesus cleaned dishes, gave hugs and checked on children. Followers of Jesus grieved with empathy and rejoiced in salvation.  Now, one follower of Jesus stands on a lemon fresh floor and waits for the voice of the Lord.

At one point, our home was in shambles. Our faith was piled in a corner like broken pieces of termite-eaten wood. Nails from wounds of our own making stuck dangerously out from unfinished flooring. Our table talk was desperate, repetitive, and hopeless.

Eventually, convinced of our own inability to construct anything beautiful from the sawdust of our own failures, we foreclosed on our dreams and handed our lives to Jesus. 

We followed Him out the front door and walked down a narrow path while He worked demolition on our hearts.

And I can feel Him still working, renovating closets and hallways that I vaguely remember exist.

With all the windows and doors of our hearts flung open to the Creator of the Universe, He continues to build His house here–one in which the rafters echo with praise for Him.


Weary soul, look up!

Salute the Commander of the lights!

He tethers planets to their orbits,

Sending charges at right timing —

Lighthouses for His glory.

Our hope sails, guided by His might.